Plans to build an eastern bypass around Chippenham – relieving congestion and freeing up housing and employment land – will now go ahead, after £75m of government funding was secured.
Wiltshire Council, supported by Chippenham Town Council and the Swindon and Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership submitted the bid back in September. Yesterday (Tuesday) the council confirmed its submission had been successful.
The relief road will link the A350 at the northern and southern ends of the town, easing the severe congestion currently experienced by people who live or travel through Chippenham and provide additional road capacity for the future.
It will also unlock development land that could support up to 7,500 new homes in Chippenham and 1 million sq ft of commercial space over the next 25 years without causing additional infrastructure problems.
Cllr Philip Whitehead, leader of Wiltshire Council, said: "We're delighted to be awarded £75 million through the Housing Infrastructure Fund.
"The bidding process is highly competitive so to secure this funding demonstrates confidence in our ability to deliver these important transport improvements and our economic and housing aspirations.
"The funding provides us with a welcome opportunity to get things right from the start and have the right infrastructure in place before any additional development takes place in and around the town centre, which is exactly what residents have told us they want.
"We know some of Chippenham's infrastructure is already at capacity which causes problems for the residents every day of the week. This essential investment will help provide a sustainable network fit for the 21st century and enable growth both in employment and housing in Chippenham.
"Added improvements will also include enhancement of the town centre and access to it, new community facilities and new public green space all of which will have a positive impact on people's lives across Chippenham and the surrounding areas."