Highways bosses have promised to preserve an ‘important local landmark’ as they prepare a start of a £1bn road scheme.
“We know what an important local landmark the black cat statue is,” said a post on a Facebook group National Highways has set up to keep residents informed on the upgrade between the Black Cat roundabout and Caxton Gibbet.
“So don’t worry we’re making plans to keep the statue safe when our scheme starts construction.
“And rest assured the statue will be back and included in the final design of the new black cat junction when our work is finished.”
National Highways will start work later this year on a new 10-mile carriageway, with a number of junction improvements.
The scheme will “improve journeys between Milton Keynes and Cambridge, bringing communities together and supporting long term growth in the region” says National Highways.
Planning permission (called a development consent order) was granted by the Secretary of State back in August 2022.
They had planned to start construction in late 2022, however Transport Action Network (TAN) submitted an application to the high court and court of appeal for permission for a judicial review of the Secretary of State’s decision to grant the A428 development consent order.
The court of appeal refused TAN’s application to appeal the refusal of permission for a judicial review.
“This means that the legal process is now over, and we can start working towards construction,” said a National Highways spokesperson.
“Unfortunately, the legal challenge has disrupted our construction timetable and the start of work has been delayed.
“We are keen to get started as soon as possible, so you will see us continue preparatory works including archaeology, environmental surveys and diverting utilities as we get ready for full construction.
“We plan to move into full construction by the end of the year and expect the road to open in 2027.”
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