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£5m link road opens up development sites and cuts congestion

A major transport link that will cut congestion, improve air quality and further open up development sites along the River Tawe is opening today (Friday).

Morfa_road_open

The £5 million pound Morfa Distributor Road, which has been developed by Swansea Council with funding from the Welsh Government, stretches for 1.7km from the Liberty Stadium, southwards along the western side of the Tawe, into the city centre.

It will help relieve congestion on nearby Neath Road which travels through the Hafod.

Cllr Mark Thomas, Cabinet Member for Environment Services, said there were many benefits to the project which has been completed ahead of schedule.

He explained: "For many years, Neath Road has been the main route through Hafod and large volumes of traffic have impacted on pollution levels.

"We expect the new road to ease some of this congestion and help improve the associated air quality problems in the area as well as making the journey in and out of the city centre easier.

"The scheme also provides enhanced cycling and walking facilities along the corridor.

"This will be a key driver for the ongoing economic regeneration along the Tawe corridor."

Since the road construction began new residential development has already been completed as well as the new Hitachi Rail depot.

Other sites along the route are also being considered for future development.

Economy Secretary, Ken Skates, said: "I am pleased that we have been able to allocate over £5m over the last five years towards this important infrastructure and to preserve some of the Hafod Copper Works historical features. 

"This investment, together with match funding from the Council and private sector, will improve access to jobs and services and open the corridor to further development opportunities.

"As well as providing a new arterial road, foot and cycle link into and out of Swansea City Centre, it will  improve journey time reliability for bus services, and through by-passing  the community of Hafod,  help improve air quality there. " 

Part of the funding has been used to preserve some of the historical features along the route associated with the Hafod Copperworks. This includes the repair to the former canal wall and the complete restoration of a nearby lime kiln.

Work has also been carried out to expose a disused masonry canal bridge which it is hoped will form part of the new access way into the redeveloped Copperworks site.

Swansea Council has already been awarded a first-round pass by the Heritage Lottery Fund for a grant of £3.75m that could see Penderyn Distillery expand their business into Swansea with a new distillery and visitor centre at the Copperworks site.

The council is now working with partners including Penderyn Distillery and Swansea University to put a far more detailed bid together as it looks to secure the funding and realise the ambition for the site.


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