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Funding agreed to explore major highways projects but what about Aberdare Bypass?

Major highways projects in Tonyrefail and Llanharan will be progressed by Rhondda Cynon Taf Council in 2017/18 after Cabinet Members agreed an important investment on Thursday.

The dualling of the A4119 from Coedely to Ynysmaerdy, and the creation of an A473 bypass in Llanharan, were discussed by Cabinet Members at their meeting on Thursday, March 9, and funding of £302,000 was agreed to commence feasibility, design and development work in 2017/18.

Both major schemes will significantly improve traffic flow at the two busy commuter routes in the County Borough.

The funding, from the Council’s Making Better Use (MBU) programme, was allocated in the Local Authority’s 2017/18 Capital Programme. The MBU programme identifies improvements to the highways network to improve traffic flow, relieve congestion and improve road safety.

A total of £1m was identified for the programme in 2016/17, while the Council’s Cabinet Members have now agreed £1.25m for 2017/18.  

It is another example of the Local Authority’s commitment to investing in the County Borough’s highways, through its ongoing £33.6m Highways, Transportation, Infrastructure and Strategic Projects (HTISP) programme.

The project around Tonyrefail and Llantrisant will see the dualling of the existing single-carriageway A4119 from Coedely to Ynysmaerdy, known locally as ‘Stinkpot Hill’. The road forms a strategic transport corridor linking the Rhondda Fawr with Llantrisant/Talbot Green and Junction 34 of the M4.

The scheme will help to resolve traffic congestion and daily queues around Tonyrefail, where the A4119 connects to a busy highway network which also serves the Royal Glamorgan Hospital, the Royal Mint and South Wales Fire and Rescue nearby.

The separate scheme in Llanharan will see a bypass created off the A473. It will be built off the roundabout near Dragon Film Studios, and connect to the A473 east of Llanharan. The western part of the proposed bypass has already been constructed as a result of developments which have taken place in the area.

The scheme will reduce the impact of traffic along the existing route, providing relief for local communities, particularly around Llanharan Square. It is anticipated that significant developer contributions will be secured to assist funding delivery of this project in future years.

Andrew Morgan, Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and Cabinet Member with responsibility for Highways, said: “These two major projects will make huge improvements to the highways networks serving our residents, with both schemes having the potential to improve traffic flow and make commuters’ lives easier on a daily basis.

“It is encouraging that the major schemes around Tonyrefail and Llantrisant, and at Llanharan, will be progressed by the Council in 2017/18 following the agreement of funding by Cabinet Members for feasibility, design and development work to take place.

“This Council is committed to improving the County Borough’s roads, as evident in the £33.6m Highways, Transportation, Infrastructure and Strategic Projects (HTISP) programme, which is making a difference to residents.

“The investment will really kick-start the A4119 and Llanharan Bypass projects, and I’m sure the announcement will be welcomed by people across the County Borough – particularly by regular commuters in the local areas.”