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Bypass could be key to Whitehaven's future prosperity

Plans for a £40 million bypass for Whitehaven have resurfaced in an economic strategy for west Cumbria.

The West Cumbria Economic Blueprint, which sets out the energy coast vision for the next 15 years, plans to link up with the Lillyhall-Parton bypass following a route behind the West Cumberland hospital and Westlakes.

The resurrection of the plans, which were put on the back burner three years ago, comes as nuclear new-build is likely to see more traffic between Whitehaven and Sellafield.

The blueprint says the relief road would alleviate pressure on the existing road network and make it easier for people to move around.

“Development of a relief road could also be linked to park-and- ride opportunities and further development at Westlakes Science and Technology Park,” the report said.

“Anticipated growth of Whitehaven alongside increased traffic movements linked to development of large employment sites and Sellafield will put further stress on the A595 route through Whitehaven.

“This could be further compounded depending on the location of potential temporary worker accommodation linked with nuclear new-build.”

Investment in A595 and A5086 improvements are also seen as a priority.

According to the blueprint strategy: “These road corridors are key in connecting the Port of Workington to the main settlements and Sellafield.

“In addition they also form an important role in improving access for visitors from the Lake District into West Cumbria.”

The Blueprint vision aims to create 3,000 new jobs and flag up a £90 billion nuclear investment over 15 years.

Copeland council leader Elaine Woodburn said: “We need a plan that helps address the economic issues we face and also offers future opportunities for our young people.

“In the past this area has been too dependent on government decisions.

“While we still need a new MOX plant and new nuclear power stations we also need to ensure that we’re in charge of our own destiny with a clear set of plans for how we will deliver diversity and independence.”

An official launch event for the final version of the blueprint is planned for June.

Have your say

@West Cumbrian Resident:
Long before the days of our over officious health & safety culture, that section of the A66 was classed as dual carriageway with a legal speed limit of 70mph.
I travelled it daily, and the flash tourists in their fancy cars used to blast past me at 80 or 90mph on the long straight (Thornthwaite) then they would hit the dual carriageway and be unable to handle the bends. Well, after a few weeks practice it was no problem passing them all again at 70mph.

Posted by Derek on 11 May 2012 at 22:39

Those aren't stupid average speed camera's along by Bassenthwaite, in fact they are about the most appropriate place for them. They were placed their because stupid drivers thought it was safe to drive as fast as possible with little or no regard at all for anyone else. Idiotic driving for their own selfish thrill seeking, never mind the children in rear seats or vunerable cyclists.

Posted by West Cumbrian Resident on 8 May 2012 at 12:43

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