Campaigners have welcomed a commitment to build a relief road in Llanbedr as part of a raft of new measures being proposed by the Welsh Government to improve transport links in the area.
Talks were recently held between local Plaid Cymru MS for Dwyfor Meirionnydd, Mabon ap Gwynfor, MP Liz Saville Roberts, Gwynedd Council Leader, Cllr Dyfrig Siencyn, Llanbedr campaign group POBL, and Deputy Minister for Climate Change, Lee Waters MS.
The proposal, dependent on funding and planning approval, is for a new relief road as part of a package of initiatives to include parking facilities, foot and cycle paths and a car-pool scheme.
Plans for a bypass were given the green light in 2020, but the scheme was scrapped following a decision by the Welsh Government not to build any more roads in Wales as it was ‘not the way forward’ according to Mr Waters, MS.
Commenting on the announcement to now build a relief road in Llanbedr, Mabon ap Gwynfor MS and Liz Saville Roberts MP said: “This is great news for the people of Llanbedr and surrounding communities and is the culmination of decades of steadfast campaigning to ease congestion, reduce noise levels and mitigate pollution in the village.
“The residents of Llanbedr and nearby communities have been campaigning for over 50 years for a resolution to their problem.
“This is an ambitious proposal which will bring substantial benefits to the area, both in terms of improving transport links and strengthening economic potential.’
“The prospect of easing congestion on the A496 through Llanbedr is significant for the whole area. The proposed scheme will provide relief for both local commuters and holiday traffic who rely on the vitally important Barmouth to Harlech route.
“The proposal for a relief road and associated transport improvements will also make the village itself safer both in terms of road safety and cleaner air quality. It will significantly improve quality of life in Llanbedr.
“We pay tribute to everyone involved in bringing about this news, both at a local and national level. We now look to the Welsh government to work with Cyngor Gwynedd and fund this initial proposal to completed design, and progress it from blueprint to construction as a matter of urgency.”
The campaign group, POBL, which was set up and consists of members of the Llanbedr community, added: “After two long years of campaign highs and lows we can now see light at the end of the tunnel.
‘We would like to thank everyone who supported and helped us along the way.
“We now look forward to moving ahead collectively to ensure an exemplar scheme we can all be proud of.”
Deputy Minister for Climate Change at Welsh Government, Lee Waters MS said: “It was good to get around a table with campaigners from Llanbedr and their local elected representatives.'
“We’ve agreed to work jointly to take forward the recommendations of the Roads Review panel, including a package of sustainable transport measures, safety improvements, and a scaled-down road option.”
Leader of Gwynedd Council Cllr Dyfrig Siencyn said: “I very much welcome the constructive dialogue that took place with representatives of the Llanbedr community, the Minister and my colleagues, Mabon ap Gwynfor MS and Liz Saville Roberts MP.
“As leader of Gwynedd Council, I am proud to be able to collaborate with the Welsh Government and Transport Wales to develop plans to invest in a green transport corridor in the Llanbedr area which includes improving access to Llanbedr airport.
“Investing in an alternative way to improve safety for pedestrians and to facilitate a transport corridor for the local community and the economy in Ardudwy is very valuable. We look forward to the constructive collaboration over the coming months.”