The opening of the Newtown Bypass will be a “momentous occasion” for Mid Wales, according to local Assembly Member, Russell George.
On Thursday 14th February, we will see the long awaited opening of the Newtown bypass, over 70 years after the need for a bypass was first suggested.
In March 2011, over 30 people joined Russell George in handing in a 10,000 strong petition to the National Assembly for Wales which called for a Newtown Bypass.
Commenting on the news that the Bypass is to open, the Assembly Member for Montgomeryshire, Russell George said:
“The opening of the Newtown Bypass on 14th February will be a momentous occasion, and the many people who have played a part in bringing about the bypass should be thanked.
“In 1949, Montgomery County Council published a public notice titled Proposed Newtown Bypass, and called for school boys aged 16 or over to consider putting themselves forward to record the number of vehicles travelling through the town between Friday September 2nd 1949 and Sunday September 4th 1949 in an effort to assess the requirement for a Newtown Bypass.
"Whilst it’s been over 70 years since the Newtown Bypass was first mooted, the Bypass is now a reality and I’m delighted that the Welsh Government Minister for Transport will be cutting the ribbon that will allow the first vehicles onto the new bypass. Tribute should also be paid to the former Transport Minister, Edwina Hart, who was always very willing to engage with me on plans for the bypass.
“I believe the bypass will have the potential to transform the economy of towns such as Newtown, Llanidloes and Machynlleth and the contractors, Alun Griffiths, should be congratulated on this incredible feat of engineering. It is an outstanding achievement.
“For a major project like this to be completed within 3 years from start to finish is amazing in itself, and there has been huge support for this project from the community and a great interest in the construction works.
“It ought to be acknowledged that people who live near the new bypass and construction sites have been incredibly patient over the past 3 years and that some landowners have had to make sacrifices and give up land belonging to their families for generations in order to allow the project to proceed.
“It’s also important to keep in mind that there will still be other construction works such as landscaping which will continue after the bypass has been opened but I’m looking forward to driving on the full length of the bypass myself.
“I firmly believe that the Newtown Bypass will serve to resolve local traffic congestion issues, improve school safety, improve response times of the emergency services and support tourism and the wider Mid Wales economy. As such, I am very much looking forward to the opening day."