Start of major transport improvements in Dorset

Published on Thursday 4 October, 2018 by Charlotte Knight

Two major transport schemes which have been designed to provide a massive boost to Dorset’s local economy are now underway.

A £5 million road improvement scheme on the A338 at Blackwater, which entails extending the southbound slip road onto the A338 and widening the stretch of road on the A338 from Blackwater towards Cooper Dean, started in September and is an essential part of overall plans to improve infrastructure on this key arterial road into Bournemouth.

It forms part of a six-year £59.4 million investment for the Bournemouth International Growth (BIG) Programme, a major economic growth programme to improve connectivity, ease congestion, drive productivity and create new jobs in and around Bournemouth Airport and Wessex Fields. 

£45.2 million was secured by Dorset LEP from the Government’s Local Growth Fund towards the BIG Programme which aims to provide the single largest employment opportunity in the south-east Dorset conurbation with the potential to create up to 10,000 new highly skilled jobs over the next decade, generate up to £500 million of GVA into the area, and deliver around 350 new homes.

Ten miles away in Poole, a £11.7 million scheme of major road improvements at Townside area is supporting the future expansion of the Port of Poole.

The Port of Poole and surrounding area is an important business region in Dorset and one of the county’s key assets.  £23.3 million from Dorset LEP’s Growth Deal fund is being invested into four major transport schemes to improve access into and around the Port of Poole.  The investment will help drive local economic growth and bring an anticipated £500 million of leveraged private investment in to the area.   

The Townside scheme covers the area between Hunger Hill and Poole Bridge, including West Street and West Quay Road and involves the reconfiguration of the Hunger Hill junction to improve its efficiency as well as the provision of more direct and safer crossings for pedestrians and cyclists.

Jim Stewart, Chair Dorset LEP said: “Poor transport links are Dorset’s number one impediment to business growth and these multi-million-pound transport improvements are addressing this very issue.  Collectively, the long-term benefits of the infrastructure improvements will bring major economic benefits to the region increasing business productivity and bringing new employment land, jobs and houses.

“These two sets of major, and much needed, infrastructure improvements are in separate parts of the county - the improvements at Townside access in Poole are 10 miles away from the roadworks at Blackwater on the A338 and will affect different road users.   

“As with all major roadworks, these economy-boosting and much-needed road improvements will inevitably cause disruption to the travelling public for which we apologise - but we would like to remind businesses of the significant long-term benefits these infrastructure improvements will bring Dorset. These essential, economy-building infrastructure improvements will improve connectivity and business productivity for our region.”

Travel information

For the A338/Blackwater improvements, the latest information is available on www.A338.info

For the Townside Access works, the latest information is available by visiting http://archive.poole.gov.uk/transport-and-streets/transport-policy/dorset-growth-deal/townside-access/

About Bournemouth International Growth (BIG) Programme

The Bournemouth International Growth (BIG) Programme is a major economic growth plan focused on improving connectivity, easing congestion, protecting existing jobs and creating new ones in and around Bournemouth Airport and Wessex Fields.

£45,200,000 has been secured by Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership as part of the Dorset Growth Deal to fund a series of transport and infrastructure investments along the A338 and B3073 corridors aimed at facilitating better access into and around Bournemouth Airport as well as unlocking employment land at Aviation Business Park and at Wessex Fields. Read more

About Port of Poole Programme

The Port of Poole and surrounding area is an important business region in Dorset and one of the county’s key assets.  £23,310,000 million from Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership’s Growth Deal fund is being invested into four major transport schemes to improve access into and around the Port of Poole.  The investment will help drive local economic growth and bring an anticipated £500 million of leveraged private investment in to the area.    Read more

About Local Growth Fund

Government provides Local Growth funding via Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) in England for projects that benefit the local area and economy. A total of £98.5 million has been secured by Dorset LEP in Growth Deals for Dorset. Read more

 

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