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Bury St Edmunds plans submitted for complete relief road from Newmarket Road to Westley Road as part of development for up to 485 homes





Long-awaited plans for a complete relief road as part of a Bury St Edmunds development of nearly 500 homes have been drafted – after previous proposals were branded ‘an over-engineered cul-de-sac’.

Pigeon Investment Management Ltd, on behalf of Pigeon (Bury West) Ltd, has submitted a hybrid planning application for 24.2ha of land, off Newmarket Road, which was identified in 2014 in the Vision 2031 blueprint for housing.

The scheme includes the construction of a full relief road including new junction works with Newmarket Road, Westley Road and Hill Road, Westley; drainage basins next to the relief road as well as pedestrian and cycle connections from the relief road onto Newmarket Road.

The Bury West relief road plans. Picture: Planning, Heritage, Design & Access Statement for land at Bury West, produced by Turley for Pigeon Bury West Ltd
The Bury West relief road plans. Picture: Planning, Heritage, Design & Access Statement for land at Bury West, produced by Turley for Pigeon Bury West Ltd

Outline permission is also sought for the construction of up to 485 homes including open space, landscaping and associated infrastructure.

In July 2019, Pigeon drafted plans for the site for the same number of homes. However, the scheme proved controversial as it included just part of a relief road due to ownership of the land.

Delivering part of the road did not provide traffic relief for Westley and was a ‘fundamental flaw’ in the delivery of the site, according to planning policy comments at the time.

It said: “At best, what is proposed appears to be an over-engineered cul-de-sac.”

The new application to West Suffolk Council features a complete relief road from Newmarket Road to Westley Road.

A planning, heritage, design and access statement, prepared by Turley, said vehicle access to the site would be created by a roundabout in Newmarket Road to the north and another in Westley Road to the south.

A road via a priority junction onto Hill Road would also be provided.

The relief road includes a footway to one carriageway edge and a segregated footway and cycleway to the other edge. These will connect to the existing footways along Newmarket Road at the northern end of the site.

The scheme contains associated junctions, which ‘if required will divert traffic away from Westley and provide a new route to junction 42 of the A14 and town centre’.

A ‘substantial green buffer’ would be created along the western edge of the site.

Land to the north west was earmarked for a new health campus as part of West Suffolk Hospital’s new site considerations. The hospital’s trust is instead building a new facility at Hardwick Manor.

The health campus land does not form part of the new application.

The planning document said that a key aim of the development was to maintain a strategic gap between Bury St Edmunds and Westley.

“This has been achieved by using the proposed relief road as the natural development boundary,” it said.

“The area will be retained as accessible open space that will be planted to emphasise the break between the two settlements, whilst creating attractive pedestrian and cycle connections and accessible open space for all to enjoy.”

Up to 146 homes would be affordable.