South Heywood Russell Homes New Link Road
The road project was approved in 2018

Contract up for grabs on £24.5m Heywood link road

The 2.8km link road between Pilsworth Road and junction 19 of the M62, intended to open up development around South Heywood, has been put out to tender by Rochdale Council.

A hybrid application was consented in March 2018 for the scheme, with Russell Homes seeking full consent for the highway, along with outline consent for the rest of a project across a 320-acre site, a scheme that includes 1,000 homes and 1.5m sq ft of commercial space and a primary school. How Planning is working for Russell Homes.

With the scheme being fully Green Belt, it had attracted opposition locally, and a call-in by Sajid Javid, Secretary of State for Housing, Communities & Local Government, was widely expected, but in April Javid gave the scheme the all-clear.

Pilsworth Road is a major employment area for the North Manchester boroughs within the Greater Manchester Combined Authority, and the new road will run from the motorway junction to those key sites. One of the benefits outlined in the application was that vehicles accessing South Heywood Distribution Park will no longer have to travel through Heywood town centre or up to Simister Island and onto the M66.

GMCA is to contribute £10.3m to the project and Highways England has committed a further £1.75m, with Russells meeting most of the remainder.

According to the developer, the scheme is estimated to be worth £175m per year to the local economy once complete, providing around 2,800 jobs including 2,300 located at a new business park.

The area as a whole is of strategic importance to GMCA, with the area billed as Northern Gateway, straddling the Rochdale and Bury boundaries between junctions 18 and 19 of the M62, accounting for a fifth of Greater Manchester’s employment allocation in GMCA’s strategic framework, with around 12m sq ft in total expected to be delivered.

Expressions of interest are invited before 25 February.

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