At last! The new East-West link road is finally open and I tested it out for the first time last weekend.
It has been a project that I have followed closely since becoming an MP in 2010. The road was always a key part of the regeneration plans for the area, but securing the funding to build it after the economic downturn in 2008 was not easy. There were several rounds of assessments of the proposal and it had to compete with hundreds of other transport capital projects nationally. We had to persuade the Treasury to alter their formula for assessing projects, but got there in the end.
There were also a number of challenges during construction. One of the wettest winters on record in 2013 led to a great deal of lost time. Getting the design of the bridge crossing the river right presented technical challenges and took three attempts. Finally, there were mine shafts that needed to be capped. I remember visiting the project around Dolcoath early on in 2013. There is local saying, "deeper than Dolcoath", and civil engineers found out what that meant. One shaft was so deep that when a rock was thrown down it, you never actually heard it land!
Now it's complete, the rest of the changes to the roads around East Hill will start to make sense. People from Troon, Beacon and Pengegon will have a shorter and quicker route to the A30. The traffic congestion on East Hill will be eased because people can use the new road instead. It opens up all of the derelict mining land around South Crofty and Dolcoath for regeneration with new housing and industrial space planned. There are even ideas for a new Fibre Park in the area so that the growing computer software industry in Camborne and Redruth has new space to move to once it has outgrown Pool Innovation Centre. So, if you have not tried the road yet, why not give it a go.