Cabinet has agreed to progress a number of key elements relating to the future A4119 dualling scheme – including a proposed new access to serve the South Wales Fire and Rescue Service (SWFRS) headquarters.
On Thursday, July 18, Members considered a report which outlines the recent progress of the scheme, which will see a 1.3km section of the A4119 dualled between Coedely and Ynysmaerdy – to increase traffic flow at peak times. In February 2019, public exhibitions were held in the two villages as part of a wider opportunity for residents to help inform the scheme’s design.
The report highlights the outcome of a Transport User Benefit Appraisal, undertaken to evaluate the benefits of a proposal to remove the existing roundabout near SWFRS. The assessment has indicated that removal of the roundabout will increase the project’s monetised benefits by 50% – helping reduce journey times and congestion, while offering best value for money.
Removal of this roundabout will require the Council to buy third-party land (or acquire it via compulsory purchase) and obtain full planning permission for works within the SWFRS headquarters.
The report adds that SWFRS has given its support in principle for the removal of the existing access, to be replaced with a new access off the Llantrisant Business Park roundabout via Sterling Drive – subject to agreeing its design, and gaining approval from the South Wales Fire and Rescue Service Board.
Included in the progress update is the current work to maximise active travel provision within the development. A shared pedestrian and cycle route is included in the dualling design – while there is also the opportunity for a new link between Coedely and the existing community route, west of the A4119.
The report states this could be achieved by one of three options, to facilitate cyclists and pedestrians crossing the A4119 – with the most favourable option being the provision of a subway.
The plans also require traffic to be merged from two lanes to one just north of Coedely roundabout – with the dualling taking place south of the roundabout. To facilitate this, the existing road bridge structure must be widened.
The update also adds that negotiation with third-party land owners has commenced in respect of land purchase, while it has been confirmed that no planning permission is required for the main dualling. With the preliminary design phase now complete, the estimated cost of the project is £14m.
On Thursday, Cabinet noted the updates included in the report, and granted permission for the Council to submit a planning application for a new access to SWFRS off the A4119 – while taking steps to acquire the land required.
Members also agreed the next steps of the project relating to the provision of a subway to increase active travel provision, along with road widening north of Coed Ely Roundabout to facilitate traffic merging.
Councillor Andrew Morgan, Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and Cabinet Member with responsibility for Highways, said: “These are very exciting times for the A4119 dualling scheme from Llantrisant Business Park to Coedely Roundabouts, with Officers working to progress its design. Cabinet has received an update on a number of important elements to the scheme.
“Officers have reported the scheme’s Benefit to Cost Ratio (BCR) based on two options relating to the SWFRS roundabout. Removal of the roundabout would see the scheme score 4.0 on a recognised BCR system – which is very high. Without removing the roundabout, the scheme would score 3.2. To give this context, the A473 Church Village bypass – universally recognised as a vital scheme for local transport links – scored 2.0 when delivered in 2010.
“Cabinet agreed for Officers to progress work with SWFRS over the removal of the roundabout as part of the scheme going forward. The intention would be to complete this access ahead of the dualling work, to minimise disruption.
“Members also agreed, as part of the scheme’s design, to widen the highway north of Coedely roundabout to facilitate traffic merging – along with additional measures to facilitate active travel. Discussions have commenced with Welsh Government in respect of potential contributions based on the subway option.
“The Council continues to work hard to ensure this important project becomes a reality in the future – utilising #RCTinvest funding and external investment where possible. Initial indications from Officers suggest that the main works could start on site during summer 2021.”
Posted on Friday 19th July 2019