It seems my cynicism about the start date for the A453 may have been slightly misplaced. I was of the view that we would see some bright yellow diggers and lots of minor celebrities sod cutting – in the weeks before a general election.
But apparently not. There is news that The Government has brought forward the dualling of the A453. It is suggested that the preparatory work will begin ‘within weeks’ and the road will be complete by the end of 2014 or early 2015 at the latest. It is long overdue as this is the worst possible access to the City from the South. The 10 miles trench is frequently log jammed. Accidents just cause tailbacks into Clifton or onto the motorway.
The extension of the Enterprise zone from the current Boots site to the Beeston former Siemens site, Science Park and Medi-Park will all benefit from this major infrastructure improvement.
The works are expected to cost between of £141m and £194m, with Nottinghamshire County Council contributing £20m and Rushcliffe Borough Council £500,000.
This really is good news as with the completion of the tram line extensions due to complete at the same time, Nottingham really will have excellent transport.
But all of this is coming at a cost. In the short term we will have some major upheaval, which is always difficult – especially for businesses. The tram is costing businesses the Workplace Parking Levy – which is a significant sum. Trams are, in my view too expensive. It can be cheaper to park in a car park for a couple of hours than pay a return ticket for two adults. I know there is fuel cost, but it’s not attractive enough a proposition.
But it is good news that the City’s infrastructure is being improved – not a moment too soon!