Councillor aims to scupper controversial Milton Keynes M1 bridge proposal

A senior councillor is hoping to scupper Milton Keynes Council’s imminent bid for money to pay for an ‘unwanted’ new bridge across the M1 motorway.

Tuesday, 19th March 2019, 4:08 pm
Updated Tuesday, 19th March 2019, 4:31 pm
Milton Keynes East, the site has been identified for 5,000 new homes

A bid for nearly £95 million is set to go from the council to the government before Friday to pay for infrastructure – including a bridge – to support 5,000 new homes proposed on the Newport Pagnell side of the M1.

Councillor John Bint (Conservative, Broughton) says there is 100 per cent opposition to any new bridge from residents in the Willen area of the city, which is not being listened to.

“Once the bid has gone in I will be asking that the government listens to the opposition from residents,” said Cllr Bint. “I am outraged by the absence of meaningful consultation and believe that there has been no meaningful traffic modelling.”

Milton Keynes East, the site has been identified for 5,000 new homes

The case for a new bridge is based on additional traffic that would come from 5,000 new homes on the way from the so-called Milton Keynes East Strategic Urban Extension.

A report being presented to tomorrow’s full council says if the Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF) bid is successful, the money will deliver 3,000 dwellings before 2031, with the remainder delivered after 2031.

The bid would also give a minimum of £15m for a primary school and a new health facility before the homes are built. A decision could come in the summer.

There are already three crossings of the M1 in the area, at junction 14, Willen Road, and the A422 Monks Way. But the council considers a new link connecting the A509 London Road with the V11 Tongwell Street is the best option.

The MK East area is in a triangle of land bounded by the M1, the A509 and the A422 roads to Newport Pagnell.

Use of the land for new housing has been brought forward by a government inspector who has made modifications to a planning document which will be presented to the full Milton Keynes Council tomorrow (Wednesday).

The council’s Labour cabinet has recommended approval be given to PlanMK at the full council meeting. Professional officers say they need the planning document in place to deliver a planned approach to growth, and protect the city from speculative building applications.

The so-called PlanMK is set to be the bible for planners in Milton Keynes and has been in the making since 2014. It sets out where the council will allow 31,000 new homes to be built by 2031 as the city grows to be a home for 300,000 people.

Cllr Bint was not planning to oppose adopting PlanMK on the basis that it provides a planning framework.