Words: John Baron
An area of land next to the busy Dawsons Corner roundabout is about to be bought by Leeds City Council to allow an £18.8m congestion-busting scheme to progress.
Councillors on the decision-making Executive Board will next week decide whether to approve a proposal to buy the workhouse allotment land at the junction of Stanningley Bypass and Bradford Road from The Calverley Charity at a cost of £1.4m.
The land would allow the council to move forward with a proposed scheme to improve pedestrian and cycling safety and connectivity at one of the busiest junctions in Leeds. It will also provide a dedicated bus lane and aims to reduce congestion for all traffic through the junction.
Landowner The Calverley Charity looks to relieve poverty in Calverley, Farsley and Thornbury by providing small grants to individuals or voluntary organisations.
The charity currently has a small cash reserve and owns approximately seven acres of land at Dawson’s Corner, Pudsey. The land is unused other than for the occasional grazing of horses.
The charity has Leeds City Council as its sole trustee – with Councillor Andrew Carter (Cons, Calverley & Farsley) named as the trustee.
A council report says the £1.4m value of the land has been set by an independent registered valuer.
Two other – smaller – pieces of land held by other landowners at the north east and north west of the junction will also be bought on a temporary or permanent basis by the council at the same time, with negotiations due to start on securing a third piece of land (see map below for sites).
The report, due to be considered by councillors next week, adds:
“The improvements aim to reduce delays and enable the junction to operate more efficiently leading to better environment in terms of air quality and enhance the key objective of all road user safety.
“If the third party land is not purchased the junction improvements will not be feasible. This has been managed through early engagement and regular communication with the various land owners.”
LCC have secured £14.48m towards the overall Dawsons Corner scheme and is applying for more funding from other sources.
The reports and full executive board agenda can be found here.
WLD reported last month that plans for a mobile phone mast at the junction of Stanningley Bypass and Bradford Road were rejected by Leeds City Council as the authority wanted to use the land for the Dawsons Corner scheme.