Isham road dualling approved

The stretch of A509 leading to the village will be upgraded as part of conditions for a nearby logistics park.

Wednesday, 11th March 2020, 10:51 am
Updated Wednesday, 11th March 2020, 10:52 am
Kettering's planning officer said the dualling would not affect the bypass prospects.

The busy A509 leading into Isham will now be dualled after planners gave the road scheme permission last night (March 10).

However many residents are not happy with the scheme to upgrade the single carriageway road saying it will increase traffic levels and create a bottleneck outside the picturesque village and also could impact on the chances of the long awaited bypass going ahead.

About 20 residents turned out to the planning meeting at Kettering Council to hear the latest chapter of the road saga that has been rumbling on for decades. £25m of regional funding assigned to the bypass was snatched away 18 months ago putting the road scheme back to square one. However Wellingborough Council is now offering to put up £1m to get the design work going. It is estimated the road will cost £40m.

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Developer DB Symmetry had applied to dual the A509 stretch as part of planning conditions attached to its mega logistics park just outside Isham which was given planning permission last year.

Residents had been against the warehouse fearing its impact on the village but at the meeting last night parish councillor Graham Rait said most had now accepted the logistics park would be built but had concerns the dualling of part of the A509 which could lead to a ‘dangerous build up of traffic’. He said since 1988 daily the number of cars going through the village has increased from 16,000 per day to 26,000 and dualling could increase levels further.

He said: “Isham residents have waited for more than 40 for this bypass.

The only beneficiary of this proposal is DB Symmetry.”

Peter Croughton, speaking on behalf of the developer said the dualling enhanced the prospect of a bypass rather than prejudicing it and would provide part of the match funding the highways authority Northamptonshire County Council needed to secure more cash commitments for the bypass.

The plans would see the 1km stretch of the road leading from junction 9 of the A14 to Isham dualled and then a roundabout built before the entrance to the village. At the meeting the council’s planning officer said the dualling would form phase one of the bypass. However using the existing A509 stretch is not part of the plans for the bypass which were given permission ten years ago.

At the meeting it was said that Northamptonshire County Council was likely to have to reapply for planning permission for the bypass as it runs out in 2022. It is possible NCC could remap the bypass route.

At the meeting the planning officer said the Environment Agency (EA) had initially objected to the developers proposals for the road because ‘ it was inadequate in terms of investigations into flood risk’. However after various interactions the EA is now satisfied that the proposed scheme is safe.

The road is prone to flooding. Last month the stretch of road due to be dualled was closed for two days because of floods caused by Storm Dennis.

Now planning permission has been granted the road will have to go through technical approval with the highways authority and there will also need to be a legal agreement drawn up.