THE much-anticipated Stubbington bypass is set to be built after central government handed over the missing £25.7m for the project.
At a conference meeting of the LEP yesterday, Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage, revealed that the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership’s bid for the remaining cash had been accepted.
This new strategic route is essential to meet the needs of long suffering residents and commuters, who put up with terrible congestion on a daily basisCaroline Dinenage MP
Campaigners have waited more than 40 years for the project to be fully funded with building estimated to start next year on the 2.2-mile (3.5km) single-carriageway road that will run from Titchfield Road to Gosport Road.
Ms Dinenage said: ‘I am delighted that this much-needed improvement project will be delivered. The Stubbington bypass is a critical part of the solution to our area’s traffic problems, which is why I have campaigned for investment in this project ever since I was first elected.
‘This new strategic route is essential to meet the needs of long-suffering residents and commuters, who put up with terrible congestion on a daily basis.’
A total of £8.5m had been pledged to the project by Hampshire County Council last year after a deal was struck with Fareham Borough Council.
It had been anticipated that Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond would reveal the funding for the project in his Autumn Statement last November but the breakdown for the £683m given to London, the south east and the south west was not disclosed.
Councillor Sean Woodward, leader of the borough council said: ‘It was four years of hard work to get this all the way from conception through public consultations, to gain planning consent plus persuading both Hampshire and Fareham council to put up millions of pounds of local funding.
‘The local contribution is what swung it and secured the final piece of the jigsaw to improve congestion for Fareham and the Gosport peninsula.’
Councillor Chris Wood, Fareham councillor for Stubbington labelled the road as the ‘single biggest piece of investment in Stubbington for a generation.’
He added: ‘It’s fantastic news for residents and I am over the moon about it.’
Gary Jeffries, chairman of the Solent LEP said the funding was a ‘major boost’ to the region.
Work on the scheme is anticipated to start at some point next year with the county council estimating that it could take two years for the road to be built.