Link road ‘on hold’

NKDC says it is reviewing its Compulsory Purchase plans for the link road across the recreation ground. EMN-150113-135810001
NKDC says it is reviewing its Compulsory Purchase plans for the link road across the recreation ground. EMN-150113-135810001

The controversial application to forcefully acquire the land to build a link road across Sleaford’s Boston Road Recreation Ground is ‘on hold’, say district council officials.

This also means the layout of the road could now be re-designed.

The link road was to be at the heart of North Kesteven District Council’s plans for regeneration.

It was said the road was needed to realise the redevelopment of the Bass Maltings and see the old Advanta Seeds site off Southgate become a Tesco supermarket, both served by the new link road from Mareham Lane to Boston Road.

The Compulsory Purchase Order for the road and the road itself were both set to be funded by 
Tesco.

The supermarket pulled out of building the new store earlier this month due to financial pressures.

The council now says the CPO application, which was needed after the Town Council refused to sell the necessary land from the recreation ground, is ‘on hold’ pending the outcome of ongoing discussions surrounding the future progress of related projects.

Almost two weeks after Tesco announced that it is to withdraw from plans to build a larger store in the town – which was central to the realisation of the link road and broader schemes – North Kesteven District Council says it continues to engage in 
preliminary discussions with partners to develop 
new options.

Council leader Marion Brighton said: “The link road was to be integral in realising the approved Maltings regeneration, unlocking the Tesco site and promoting wider growth opportunities in Sleaford Town centre.

“With Tesco no longer at the heart of this, we have an opportunity to review all options, which potentially includes the configuration of the link road from what is currently approved.

“As such we are unable to proceed with the application as swiftly as we had envisaged and for the timebeing it is effectively on hold.

“Our ultimate aim is to achieve the best solution we can for the Maltings.

“It will undoubtedly take some months to fully engage partners and the public and to set out appropriate options, but I would hope we could be in a stronger, clearer position by the summer.”

Chairman of Sleaford Town Council Keith Dolby said the council ‘will co-operate with any plans that we feel are for the benefit of the people of Sleaford’.

He will be meeting with NKDC’s leader and chief executive on Monday.

l Tesco pulling its store development plans dominates our letters page. See page four for reaction to last week’s story.

l What do you think should happen now? Email your thoughts to andy.hubbert@jpress.co.uk or write to 
us via the address on page 
two.