BCP Council and Royal Bournemouth & Christchurch Hospitals (RBCH) will work together to draw up future solutions to tackle congestion in and around the hospital site.
Following yesterday’s (30 September) decision by BCP Council’s Cabinet to build part of the road from the A338 up to the Wessex Fields development site boundary line, councillors have pledged to work with the local community on any future plans for the site, including working with representatives from the NHS to develop new infrastructure and policies that prioritise sustainable travel to and from the hospital.
Currently earmarked for employment use, Wessex Fields is located near the A338 and Royal Bournemouth Hospital. Funding via the Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership will see part of a road built from the A338 up to the Wessex Fields boundary line which will enable future jobs to be created in this area.
A public engagement event on the future use of Wessex Fields is planned for November 2019.
A partnership between BCP Council and the NHS will see both parties work together to explore future funding options which could include a controlled access road built that connects the A338 to the hospital site, as well as better cycling and public transport access.
Councillor Vikki Slade, Leader of BCP Council, said; “We are clear that Wessex Fields represents a good opportunity to create some valuable, high-quality and skilled jobs, whilst also supporting our Partners in the NHS in addressing congestion in the area.
“We have made it clear that as a Cabinet we want to see any future development plans place more emphasis on sustainable transport options and not just focus on increasing road-space for cars. We are conscious of the impact of transportation on the environment, air quality and reducing our carbon footprint wherever possible.
“It is vital that travel, transport and infrastructure developments support clean economic growth, help to improve health and wellbeing and make the area a better place to live, work and visit.
“We recognise the steps already taken by RBCH to encourage and enable sustainable travel to, from and between its various locations, and we are pleased it has plans to develop this even further.
“We are committed to working with the local NHS in delivering a high quality, integrated and low carbon transport system not just for the immediate future, but for generations to come.”
Debbie Fleming, Chief Executive, Royal Bournemouth & Christchurch Hospitals, said “We recognise patients, visitors and staff are keen for improved access to the hospital, and we believe that working with our Council partners we can reduce congestion in the area, in a way that supports health and the environment. There’s lots of work to do and we’re committed to doing this as a partnership with BCP Council.”