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Llanharan sustainable transport corridor to progress

Road works (Adobe Stock)

RCT Council has confirmed that over the last year, the Council has been working closely with Welsh Government and Transport for Wales (TfW) to review the Llanharan Link Road, which was paused under the Welsh Government’s Roads Review.

Reconsideration of the proposed scheme, working in alignment to the new Welsh Government requirements for sustainability, has allowed the Council to work closely with Transport for Wales to re-design the scheme.

The re-designed scheme will deliver a new link road to help remove HGVs and heavy traffic through the village of Llanharan.  However the new scheme will have public transport and active travel – with over 4km of active travel links – embedded in its principles.

The new scheme will also see a 30% – 35% reduction in embedded carbon.  Crucially, the footprint of the scheme will reduce by 45% and there will be no loss to local ancient woodland. The overall scheme will also see an enhancement of biodiversity in line with Planning Policy Wales guidance.

Traffic lights and junctions will have bus priority measures, whilst the local communities will be served by an enhanced bus service of 4 buses per hour.

Leader of RCT Council, Councillor Andrew Morgan OBE, said: “Through months of close working between RCT Council, Welsh Government and Transport for Wales, we believe that we now have a much better scheme which both meets the needs of the local community and more closely aligns with the Welsh Government’s transport strategy.

“The scheme is designed to have sustainable transport at its heart with both public transport and active travel embedded as core priorities.

“There is still more work to be done to finalise the scheme before we progress for planning permission, and during this next phase more challenge and refinement of the scheme will be undertaken to ensure that Llanharan sees a truly sustainable transport corridor delivered.”

The Deputy Minister for Climate Change with Responsibility for Transport, Lee Waters added: “I am really encouraged that the team at Rhondda Cynon Taf have risen to the challenge set by our Roads Review panel to reach the higher bar set for building roads in the future.

“They have gone back to the drawing board and designed a scheme that provides the connectivity they originally wanted but in a way that significantly lessens the environmental impact and builds in advantages for public transport, walking and cycling.

“There’s more work to be done on the final detail but this work shows that we can do things differently in Wales to help tackle the climate and nature emergencies.”