Updated costs of West Link Reported to Planning, Development and Infrastructure Committee
Costs of the West Link are to be reported to the Planning, Development and Infrastructure Committee as part of the Capital Monitoring Report, which will be published on the Council website later this week.
The costs are reported at £36.6M (at December 2014 prices). This includes inflation increase from the cost of £34.398 reported in September 2013. Due to the extended construction programme, with works anticipated to be complete in 2020/21 and applying construction index inflation* over this period an allocation in the capital programme of £43.35m will be recommended.
Planning approval for the West Link was issued on 14 April 2014 following consideration at the South Planning Application Committee on 8 April 2014.
Following the publication of the Compulsory Purchase Order and Road Orders and objections being received, a Public Inquiry/Hearing is required, chaired by an independent Reporter. The Reporter held a pre-examination meeting today, on Tuesday 10 February, to consider the structure and agenda of the Inquiry/Hearing.
The West Link also unlocks the opportunity for enhanced sports facilities for Inverness. The Rugby pitches and facilities at Canal Parks are currently in the pre application consultation stage prior to formal planning submission, The existing facilities will be enhanced to provide a community facility managed by Highlife Highland with an estimated cost of £3.64 million and completion programmed for 2018.
A planning application for the detailed layout and design of the golf course development was submitted on 23 January 2015, The layout allows the golf course to be located within one area of land north of the A82, which is preferable to the current arrangement of golfers having to cross the A82 and General Booth Road. The new golf course is programmed to become playable in 2019 and applying inflation over this period identifies a capital allocation of £8.2m.
Chair of Planning Development and Infrastructure Committee, Cllr Thomas Prag said: “The costs of the West Link reported are in line with figures already given to Council previously. The project offers substantial opportunities to further enhance sports facilities and attractions for the benefit of the whole of Inverness.
“The Torvean and Ness-side Development Brief identifies and protects part of the area to the west side of the canal for the development of a sports hub. A feasibility study has been commissioned through Highlife Highland for the potential to create a regional sports facility in the West of Inverness, with significant investment from SportScotland. The outcome of this study will be reported to committee in due course.”
Costs for the West Link and associated sports facilities will be considered at Full Council on 12 March 2015, as part of the Capital Programme.