The South Devon Link Road project team has announced the launch of a new bus service, as construction on the A380 South Devon Link Road moves into the next phase.
The new bus route is being introduced as a result of the closure of five bus stops along the Link Road. Activity is planned on sections of the existing A380 which are currently used by traffic, so the bus stops in three locations will be permanently removed on 28th July.
The locations of the bus stops to be removed are:
• Milber Steps, Newton Abbot – North and Southbound
• Aller Brake, Newton Abbot – North and Southbound
• Hanson’s Quarry, Newton Abbot – Northbound
The new service, provided by Devon County Council in partnership with Stagecoach, is intended to reduce the impact of this change on residents of Aller and Milber.
The enhanced bus service for the area will divert service 66 journeys via Aller Brake Road and St Marychurch Road.
The new Service 66 will provide a newly configured route that will include:
• An hourly Monday –Saturday bus into Newton Abbot Town Centre via the Railway Station
• An hourly Monday - Friday link to The Willows, Torbay Hospital and South Devon College.
• On Saturday there are two journeys to The Willows, Torbay Hospital and Paignton.
• On Sunday there are two journeys into Newton Abbot Town Centre via the Railway Station.
The bus stops, situated southbound at Penn Inn and Romany Jones will remain in place. The bus stop at Penn Inn, near to McDonalds, Newton Abbot, will be extended back onto the roundabout to allow Exeter-bound buses to stop before continuing on their journeys.
New bus stops will be introduced along Aller Brake Road, with two near the top and two near the bottom. The exact locations have yet to be finalised, but will be located at the top and bottom of Aller Brake Road.
Initially, the new section of road at the top of Aller Brake Road, allowing access to St Marychurch Road will not be completed. However construction of this junction to open up the connection to Aller Brake Road from St Marychurch Road is scheduled to start shortly. Until this work is complete, buses will temporarily operate via Aller Brake Road, Ash Way, Laburnham Road and Addison Road to St Marychurch Road.
Single and Day Return fares will be available on service 66 and 174. Day return tickets issued from Aller Brake Road to Newton Abbot will be valid on both services.
Andrew Leadbetter, Cabinet Member for Economy and Growth at Devon County Council, said: “This new bus service and closure of the bus stops was part of the original plan for the project.
“We are committed to ensuring that we listen to the community and - wherever possible - take action to minimise the impact the construction of the new road has on the community.
“As a result, the public has been kept informed throughout the process and we have taken their comments on board, incorporating feedback where we can and configuring the route in line with demand. In addition we have been consulting closely with the Community Liaison Group – which represents residents, commuters and businesses from across the area - to finalise the routes for the new service.
“This new bus route will offer residents an enhanced service, allowing more frequent journeys to a wider number of locations throughout the area.”
Jim Watson, South Devon Link Road Project Director, said: “Until now most of the construction work has taken place ‘off-line’, with limited interface with road users and pedestrians.
“We are now entering the next phase of activity, which means that motorists and pedestrians will be directed through alternative safe routes. The changes will be minimal, but driver awareness is crucial for the safety of our workforce, pedestrians, cyclists, and other road users, in these restrictive working areas.”