Dinan Way link plans could be set for £18m Levelling Up boost

Dinan Way junction. Ref exe 05-16AW 8319. Picture: Alex Walton

Dinan Way junction. Ref exe 05-16AW 8319. Picture: Alex Walton - Credit: Archant

Plans to extend a major Exmouth link road to connect with the A376 could be set for an £18million ‘levelling up’ boost. 

Devon County Council and East Devon District Council could bid for nearly £75million of government funding, among which is £18million earmarked to be spent on the completion of the Dinan Way link extension. 

Currently traffic from Dinan Way has to use unsuitable residential roads to access the A376. The bid includes improved pedestrian and cycle connections to the Exe Estuary multi-use trail and has the potential to improve bus journey times to Exeter. The wider bid includes other walking and cycling improvements focusing on the regeneration of the town centre. 

Proposal for the new Dinan Way link.

Proposal for the new Dinan Way link. - Credit: Archant

The county council’s cabinet is being recommended to approve a package of five schemes to be put forward for cash from the government’s Levelling-Up Fund and to make a contribution of more than £6 million towards the work. 

If successful, £20million would be invested in the completion of Dinan Way, with both Devon County Council and East Devon District Council committing to provide £1million each. 

Also benefitting from the £75million would be plans for a second railway at Okehampton, a new slip road at Lee Mill and an enhanced cycle route between Newton Abbot and Torbay. 

Devon’s Cabinet Member for climate change, environment and transport, Andrea Davis, said: “Throughout the pandemic, the county council has been working in close partnership with the district councils to support the most vulnerable people in our community. 

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“This new bid demonstrates the Team Devon partnership now working to support economic recovery and growth in close collaboration with our MPs. These schemes will also reduce carbon emissions, improve air quality, cut congestion and improve the safety, security and overall experience of transport users. 

“This is the second round of bidding for Levelling-Up cash. We didn’t do as well as we wanted in the first round and I hope the Government will look more favourably on these ambitious proposals. 

“Just last month the University of Exeter published a report calling for the Government to prioritise the South West in its levelling-up efforts.  

“Devon is a beautiful place but it’s not just seaside holidays and cream teas. Four of our eight districts are among the UK’s worst 25 low wage ‘hotspots’ and too many of our youngsters don’t go on to university or vocational training which will enable them to get the better-paid jobs. 

“We’ve got an ambitious Team Devon proposal for devolution which would enable us to tackle some of these structural problems in the longer term but these five bids would be a real start in helping us to boost our economic growth and fight climate change by providing real alternatives to our reliance on our cars.” 

The cabinet meeting will take place at County Hall, Exeter, on Wednesday, May 11, at 10.30am