Work on Newton Abbot link road needed for 1,000 plus homes scheme begins

    Work has started on the first phase of a new vital link road on the outskirts of Newton Abbot which is needed to enable a housing development of more than 1,000 homes to come forward. The £4.5m scheme, which will enable developments planned for the Houghton Barton area, forms the first part of the road which will eventually link the A382 at Forches Cross to the A383 at Hele Park.


    Work has started on the first phase of a new vital link road on the outskirts of Newton Abbot which is needed to enable a housing development of more than 1,000 homes to come forward.
    The £4.5m scheme, which will enable developments planned for the Houghton Barton area, forms the first part of the road which will eventually link the A382 at Forches Cross to the A383 at Hele Park.
    The Houghton Barton site cuts across a huge area and stretches from Forches Cross on the A382 Bovey Tracey Road westwards towards the Seale Hayne campus and then south to the former Hele Park Golf Course on the A383 Ashburton Road.
    The A382-A383 connection, unanimously given planning permission back in September 2019, will eventually provide an alternative route between the two roads to relieve pressure on the local highway network including the road through the area of Highweek.
    The section of the Houghton Barton Link Road, between Forches Cross and Howton Road, will be delivered by Devon County Council, while the phase between Howton Road and the A383, will be delivered by developers as part of any planning application for the site, with a scheme for 1,150 homes currently under consideration by Teignbridge planners.
    The 160-hectare site to the west of Newton Abbot is enclosed by the A382 and A383 and has been allocated for a mix of residential and employment development as part of the adopted Teignbridge Local Plan.
    Cllr Andrea Davis, Devon County Council cabinet member for environment and infrastructure, said: “The planned development will enable important growth in Newton Abbot as we look to support economic recovery across the county. The current road infrastructure in the Houghton Barton area needs upgrading to support these planned developments and this new link road will reduce the impact on the local transport network.”
    Executive member for planning at Teignbridge, Cllr Gary Taylor, welcomed the start of the work, and said: “This is an important step forward in ensuring we have the infrastructure to support our communities and our businesses as well making sure it is in place before people move into these new developments.”
    Karl Tucker, chair of the Heart of the South West LEP, added: “It’s great to see this important project making good progress. The alterations will have an overall impact on the highway network by improving junction operation, reducing journey times to Newton Abbot, improving safety and importantly enabling people to cycle and walk the route as well as drive. We’re delighted that the Heart of the South West LEP has been able to support this project through Growth Deal funding, which is expected to generate 1,000 jobs and 1,200 new homes by 2021.”
    Cllr Phil Bullivant, Devon County Councillor for Newton Abbot North, and also the opposition group leader on Teignbridge District Council said: “The housing developments that have taken place over the last 10 years between these two roads has resulted in significant increased levels of traffic through the Highweek area of Newton Abbot.
    “Highweek is a village with typical narrow village streets and unsuited as a route for local traffic seeking access to the main roads in the area. The new relief road will open an alternative route that will take away the volume of traffic through Highweek and help reduce journey times, lower air pollution and be welcomed by all local residents and the residents of Hele Park.”
    Construction work is due to take around nine months, but as most of the work is off the local road network there is expected to be little disruption to traffic.
    The plans are to build 2.5km of new road that will cut across from the A382 to the A383, through the Houghton Barton development area.
    The proposed A382-A383 connection is considered ‘critical’ in addressing the increase in traffic as a result of the proposed developments around Newton Abbot, particularly around Ashburton Road, Dyrons roundabout, Whitehills roundabout and Exeter Road, and will ensure that the Houghton Barton development can be delivered.
    The route of the new road from the north west of Forches Cross would roughly follow Staplehill Road until the junction with Perry Lane, where it would follow this road until it is close to Howton Road.
    From this point it would cross agricultural land with one spur going to Buttercup Way and a second spur joining with Howton Lane, to exit onto the A383 Ashburton Road.
    A segregated cycle/footway would be provided along the length of the new road and a foot/cycle bridge would be constructed over the road at Forches Cross.
    Land is allocated in the Teignbridge Local Plan (Policy NA1) for at least 1,800 homes, 18 hectares of employment, a road linking the A382 to the A383, a primary school, and other community facilities and open spaces.
    In addition to the 650 homes as part of the Hele Park development currently under construction, two planning applications for the rest of Houghton Barton site were submitted by developers back in April 2020, but no determination of them by planners has yet been made.
    The first (Application A) contains outline proposals for up to 900 homes, an employment site, a primary school, a local centre, leisure uses, a public common, and part of the link road through the site. Detailed proposals are submitted for the first 400 homes.
    The second application (Application B) is an outline application for up to 250 new homes on adjacent fields that are allocated for development within the Local Plan, but developers say they have submitted this application because they cannot accommodate the full 1,100 homes within the allocated area.
    The site is allocated for development in the Local Plan and over 160 hectares of land, 1,150 new homes, employment land, a new primary school, a new community centre, a shopping parade, and a multi-purpose community building, as well as a new link road that would connect the A382 with the A383, would be built.
    The development would be split into two main character areas – Farleigh Village (the area closest to the A383) and Seale Hamlets (the area around the Seale-Hayne campus). The first phase of development would be carried out at Farleigh Village, just off the A383 Ashburton Road.
    As well as the housing, the application would include a new primary school, a supermarket as the anchor tenant for the shopping parade, a community centre that could include primary healthcare facilities, and repurpose the existing Seale-Hayne Sports Hall as a space for additional community and leisure uses.
    And as part of the draft Teignbridge Local Plan review, a site to the west of Houghton Barton is one that is under consideration, with an indicative number of homes of around 1,634 – 2,109 potentially deliverable.
    The large site comprises multiple sloping agricultural fields, lies primarily on the north side of the A383, adjacent to Seale Hayne and the existing Local Plan NA1 allocation.

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