Plans for town cen­tre link road are un­veiled

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Opinion - by Mike Ben­nett mben­nett@thek­m­group.co.uk

SCORES of peo­ple took the op­por­tu­nity to look at plans for a ma­jor road project.

Pro­pos­als for the new Vic­to­ria Way re­lief road through the heart of Ash­ford were on show at an ex­hi­bi­tion at Vic­to­ria Road Pri­mary school on Fri­day and Satur­day.

More than 120 res­i­dents vis­ited the event to view plans and dis­cuss how the new route will be de­vel­oped.

Andy Phillips, head of trans­port for Ash­ford’s Fu­ture, said: “We were de­lighted by the num­ber of peo­ple who came to have a look at the plans and, over­all, they were very well re­ceived.

“There were a few con­cerns ex­pressed by some lo­cal res­i­dents but this is to be ex­pected when you con­sider the scale of the de­vel­op­ment pro­posed.

“Once the ideas were ex­plained in more de­tail the ma­jor­ity went away feel­ing pos­i­tive about the de­vel­op­ment.

“The new Vic­to­ria Way will play a key part in the trans­for­ma­tion of the town cen­tre by al­low­ing it to grow and thrive.

New route

“We be­lieve the whole area will ben­e­fit as it will pro­vide a new route to ac­cess the town cen­tre and sta­tion and will open up the whole area for fu­ture de­velop- ment, in­clud­ing new shops, restau­rants and cafes and homes.”

Vic­to­ria Way is a pro­posed new route to the south of the town cen­tre to link Ash­ford In­ter­na­tional Sta­tion at Beaver Road and the A28 Chart Road.

It will fol­low the ex­ist­ing Vic­to­ria Road to Cherry Court where a new road will be built to join the end of Lea­con Road by Mata­lan at Fair­wood In­dus­trial Es­tate.

Vic­to­ria Way will be de­liv­ered in phases as de­vel­op­ment along the route takes place.

The ini­tial phase in­cludes the pro­vi­sion of a new road from Beaver Road to the A28 Chart Road, the in­tro­duc­tion of a tree-lined street and the cre­ation of a pub­lic square next to Vic­to­ria Road Pri­mary school.

The es­ti­mated cost for the ini­tial phase is £17 mil­lion, which will be funded by cen­tral gov­ern­ment and de­liv­ered by Kent County Coun­cil on be­half of Ash­ford’s Fu­ture.

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Ai­dan Mullen of land­scape ar­chi­tects Whitelaw Turk­ing­ton and Theresa Trus­sell of KCC ex­am­ine plans for the pro­posed route

The new link plan goes on dis­play at Vic­to­ria Road school; from left, teacher Lynn Sim­mons, Mark Chap­lin of Ash­ford Coun­cil and pupil Daniel Wood­cock

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