Wednesday, January 25, 2012

News: Waverley Link re-think


Plans for a link road to the massive regeneration project at Waverley in Rotherham will have to go back to the drawing board as green space in Sheffield looks set to permanently protected as part of an initiative for the Queen's diamond jubilee this summer.

The Waverley Link Road aims to support regeneration and economic growth at the Advanced Manufacturing Park and Waverley developments in Rotherham.

The AMP is the UK's premier advanced manufacturing technology park, providing world-class advanced manufacturing technology solutions to ensure repetitive advantage for industry. It is home to the likes of Boeing and Dormer Tools and Rolls-Royce are planning major investments in new facilities.

Led by UK Coal, the £100m Waverley regeneration project on the site of the former Orgreave colliery is the biggest brownfield site development in South Yorkshire and covers 741 acres, an area bigger than Sheffield city centre.

The planned link road would be a 1.2 mile long single-carriageway joining Retford Road and Highfield Lane. The planned route would have used a portion of Woodhouse Mill Recreation Ground, also known locally as Woodhouse Mill Playing Fields.

Sheffield Council, whilst supporting the wider Waverley and Lower Don Valley regeneration initiatives does not support the loss of land through the playing field to accommodate the proposed road line.

A £21m route over the River Rother and railway line was discounted on the grounds of cost and the ideal route proposed by planners was to cross the river and the Yorkshire Water sewage works. However, Yorkshire Water stated that this £10m route was unacceptable to them as it affected future expansion of the Sewage Treatment Works.

Costs for the chosen route were reduced in the hope of securing government funds for the £8.57m scheme. The remainder of the costs were to be met by UK Coal and the council.

A bid from Rotherham Council for £6.961m from the Department for Transport (DFT) was turned down in December.

The DFT sated that they recognise "that there is a case for additional capacity in this area but the currently proposed scheme does not appear to be deliverable. Rotherham Borough Council are invited to work with Sheffield and other stakeholders and to propose a resolution to the issue by 31 March 2012."

As part of the Queen Elizabeth II Fields Challenge in 2012, the Woodhouse Mill Recreation Ground will be dedicated as a "Queen Elizabeth II Field" and be managed as a recreation ground / playing field for continued public benefit.

The bid secured 68 votes in the national initiative that involved local communities directly nominating and voting for local playing fields.

Images: RMBC


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