PLANS for the regeneration of Portsmouth have received a huge boost with the announcement of almost £19.5m of government funding for the redevelopment of Tipner.
The Department for Transport has awarded the money for the construction of a new motorway junction on the M275 as well as a park and ride facility and a southbound bus priority lane.
Portsmouth City Council secured the money to go alongside more than £8.5m it is investing in the project, which is vital to the city’s overall regeneration plans.
The city council’s economic boss and Portsmouth South MP, Cllr Mike Hancock, said: ‘I’m delighted the funding has been confirmed.
‘The new junction and park and ride in Tipner are key to Portsmouth’s regeneration strategy.
‘Not only does it enable us to improve that area of the city, but the sustainable transport link it creates is invaluable to the future development of the city centre and seafront.’
The new junction will provide access to the park and ride on the east of the M275 as well as unlocking the land to its west for future development.
There will be no access for motorway traffic to reach existing residential areas in order to prevent rat-running in the area.
The park and ride site has plans for 663 spaces, to cater for increasing numbers of visitors to the city centre and seafront, as well as for commuters and major events in the city.
Kathy Wadsworth, director of regeneration at the council, said: ‘Tipner’s regeneration is a huge project.
‘There is a lot of good work happening in the area to clean up land and create a bright future and this funding brings our vision a big step forward.’
Work on the project will begin in January 2013 with completion expected in spring 2014.
Local Transport Minister Norman Baker said: ‘This important scheme will encourage regeneration of the Tipner site by opening up access to the area for businesses and visitors.
‘The new junction on the M275 and the new park and ride scheme will be a huge boost for the area – helping to deliver new homes and new jobs as well as reducing congestion and encouraging visitors to the city.
‘Having visited Portsmouth to see for myself, I am in no doubt that this is a good scheme and a sensible use of taxpayers’ money.
‘The £19.5 million we are putting into this scheme shows that the coalition government is serious about investing in the infrastructure the country needs to drive economic growth.’
The council’s work takes place alongside land development projects being carried out by the Homes and Communities Agency and Tipner Regeneration Company which have planning permission to provide almost 600 homes between them as well as some retail space.
The cash from the government forms part of £1bn investment headed to the city and is another step towards defining Portsmouth as the great waterfront city.
It follows government endorsement of a £13m plan to make Portsmouth a super-connected city and boost broadband and wireless availability. And Portsmouth was recently named the fourth best place in the country to live and work by the Good Growth for Cities report.