Construction on a Pendle villages bypass would not begin before 2020/21 if it is chosen as the best solution to solve the town’s traffic problems.
The announcement has been made after Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson wrote to Lancashire County Council on behalf of residents wanting to know more about the bypass proposals, which could see the M65 linked to Foulridge around Colne.
Following the East Lancashire Highways and Transport Masterplan public consultation, LCC have been carrying out roadside interview surveys in Colne.
The results, they say, will provide a good indication of the possible benefits and economic viability of various highway improvement schemes, one of which could be a bypass.
Director of transport and environment Mike Kirby replied: “A programme of roadside interview surveys to identify journey patterns into and around Colne has recently been completed. An associated programme of turning counts at key junctions and automatic traffic counts on many other roads is also well under way.
“We expect the preliminary analysis of the data from the interview surveys to be completed within the next two to three months.
“This will tell us what the main traffic movements are through Colne, and their relative volumes.
“If the data supports the case for a bypass, work will continue to build a robust traffic model and develop highway designs, leading to a public consultation on the viable options. This will then be followed by the development of a Major Scheme Business Case for the chosen option, in order to be able to secure the necessary funding.
“The timetable for this and the legal framework surrounding it means that, if the bypass were proven to be the best viable solution to Colne’s congestion issues, construction could not start before 2020/21.”
Responding, Mr Stephenson said: “Many people have had their journeys delayed by the traffic surveys being carried out.
“However I am pleased the county council continue to look at the traffic problems in Colne, ahead of a new consultation on possible ways of resolving this. What is very clear is that we need a solution.”