'Kingskerswell bypass will bring cash benefits'
TACKLING congestion and boosting tourism are among the benefits of the Kingskerswell bypass outlined by the Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander.
The Lib Dem Cabinet Minister has said the link road scheme was set to provide a return of £5.40 for every £1 of public money spent through time savings, reduced vehicle running costs, and more reliable public transport.
He was responding to a question by Torbay MP Adrian Sanders (pictured) over the effect on the South Devon economy of the project.
The Government is contributing £76.4 million towards the scheme.
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Poor transport links in South Devon have long been seen as a barrier to inward investment and jobs.
The bypass, which includes more than three miles of dual carriageway linking Newton Abbot and Torbay with a flyover at Penn Inn, is widely recognised as key to unlocking the Bay's economic potential, and is predicted to create almost 8,000 jobs.
In a written answer, Mr Alexander told the Bay's Lib Dem MP: "The construction of the South Devon Link Road seeks to address the problem of congestion on the A380 through Kingskerswell, on the main route into Torbay from Exeter.
"The adverse impacts of this congestion include (1) stifling of the economy of Torbay, (2) environmental detriment to the village of Kingskerswell and (3) poor reliability of public transport. The section of the road in question is the only non-dualled section on the A380 until it reaches Torquay.
"The economic benefits are expected to be £5.40 per £1 of public money spent comprising: time savings (79 per cent), vehicle operating cost savings (five per cent) and reliability benefits (16 per cent).
The scheme is likely to have a positive impact on employment in the Torbay Regeneration Area, particularly in the tourism industry."
He added: "The Government continues to provide support to local authorities for transport projects by way of grants, including the Integrated Transport Block and LA Majors. IUK also supports the delivery of major infrastructure projects where there is capital investment from the public sector."