New road 'will scar landscape'

After a long delay, a road through some of the country's most scenic areas is set to be approved.

Landscape architects are due to start work on a controversial road through one of the UK’s most scenic areas after a 13-year delay. Leeds-based Golder Associates aims to minimise the impact of the 6.8km High & Low Newton Bypass slicing up countryside just south of Lake Windermere. Landscape architect Chris Greenwood of Lake District National Park Authority, which is working with Golder Associates, said: “It will be quite a scar on the landscape, with cuttings and embankments up to 13m high.” Designers will deal with hedging, walls and wildlife. Main contractor Laing O’Rourke won an award for a road though Snowdonia National Park and will realign land profiles to ensure natural contours. It will also introduce bats and badgers. A public inquiry approved the scheme in 1993 but funding problems held up work. The £22m project is over budget and the Department of Trade & Industry is deciding whether to give more cash, said Greenwood. “Locals are split on the project and the authority takes a neutral line, balancing economic development with environmental harm.”

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