Tip slip road and depot plan moves forward
WORK on a scheme aimed at cutting queues at the Mangotsfield Sort It recycling centre could be under way within a year.
South Gloucestershire Council says the scheme has "made a key step forward" after it bought land to build a new slip road for queuing vehicles next to the tip in Carsons Road.
The council has declined to reveal how much it has paid for the 2.33 acres of land, which will also be used to relocate its current waste collection vehicle depot from Warmley to Mangotsfield.
A report to the council's cabinet when it approved a revamp of its waste collection services put the cost of the slip road project at £600,000.
The council said building the slip road and depot would "help us create efficiencies in the service, save money and reduce carbon emissions through less vehicle movements, thereby contributing towards our climate emergency declaration ambitions".
Queuing traffic at the site has been the subject of years of complaints by residents, particularly those living in the neighbouring Siston Hill estate.
The council says it has put "various measures" into place over recent years to improve traffic management but the extra slip road was needed to improve traffic flow and prevent queues backing up on to Carsons Road.
Cabinet member for communities Rachael Hunt said: “We are delighted that this land acquisition has now been completed and that we are able to progress with our plans at Mangotsfield. We have been working to find a solution to the access issues at the site for some time, as we know local people have been frustrated with the traffic queues at peak times.
“These improvements will also help us to continue to support our residents to do the right thing for the environment by reducing, reusing and recycling items.”
The council aims to submit a planning application for the slip road by the end of the year, with a view to starting work during the autumn of 2021.
The base for refuse vehicles would be built within the next two years after that, with a separate planning application, after which the fleet would be moved from its current site at Cowhorn Hill, Warmley, which will be sold to help fund the project.
Residents of the Siston Hill estate nearby criticised the plans when they first emerged last year, claiming that the council's plans did not tackle the source of the current problems and could actually make things worse.
New Cheltenham ward councillor Kim Scudamore questioned the expenditure on the scheme at a meeting last year after an officers' report said the council was planning to buy the land at "above market value".
But council leader Toby Savage said it was “value for money when you consider the strategy in its entirety".