A Government funding bid has been submitted with a view to reopening Undercliff Drive.
Following a public consultation last summer, in which 58 per cent of respondents (770 surveys completed) supported reinstating the road, the Isle of Wight Council has submitted an expression of interest to the Department for Transport’s maintenance challenge fund.
A council spokesperson said:
“If successful in this competitive process, the council will submit a fully detailed bid for the funding.”
Plan to reinstate the road
The funding would be used to design and deliver a solution to reinstate the road — a project estimated to cost between £1 million and £2 million, depending on whether it would be open for one or two-way traffic and subject to vehicle weight restrictions.
Undercliff Drive has been closed to traffic since a landslip in 2014.
In 2016, part of the landslip was cleared and access to nine properties was restored. A through-route for pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders was also created.
When Dave Stewart, ward councillor for Niton and Whitwell, became leader of the Isle of Wight council in 2017, he vowed to reopen the road.
Consultation respondents who supported reopening the road said it benefit tourism and be more convenient for drivers.
However, Ventnor Town Council objected to the idea, due to the possibility of future landslips.
This article is from the BBC’s LDRS (Local Democracy Reporter Service) scheme, which OnTheWight is taking part in. Some alterations and additions may be been made by OnTheWight. Ed