Businesses rally in support of South Bristol Link
Local and regional business support for the South Bristol Link was key to it being granted planning permission.
“The support for the link was described as ‘unprecedented’ by the planning committee and ensured that businesses needs were integral to the debate. We have a lot to thank the businesses for,” said Paul Wilson, Chief Executive of the LEP.
Local residents and south Bristol business representatives, Mike Knight and Phil Pope from the Cater Business Park Business Improvement District, worked closely with Bristol Airport and Business West to rally support.
“We knew that a strong demonstration of local support was necessary as there was some opposition to the scheme and the planning committee does listen to local opinion on things like this. The danger was that the silent majority would be ignored, we simply encouraged these people to put their support in writing,” said Mike.
James Durie from Business West agreed, “We have been working with the councils on the plans for the investment in the South Bristol Link for many years and were determined not to see it fail at the planning stage. Working closely with Bristol Airport – that is putting in about £4million to the building of the link - we set about encouraging others to voice their support. The scheme is important to the whole of our city and particularly for people living and working in south Bristol.”
“In total there were over 80 letters and comments in favour of the link from businesses, business groups and community organisations, both universities, as well as 2 petitions from local residents totalling 325 names. This is something that the councillors commented on, and I think made a real difference.”
“We need to build on this and when the planning applications for other sections of the MetroBus route, or other infrastructure investment plans are put forward. We must show our support to keep the area moving forwards,” said James.
The South Bristol Link is part of the MetroBus network , a £200 million investment in high quality, reliable express public transport network that connects south Bristol, Ashton Vale Park and Ride and Hengrove with Temple Meads and the city centre, then travels up the M32 via a bus only link to UWE, and the north fringe, then east and west to Cribbs Causeway and Emersons Green.
Find out more at www.travelwest.info/metrobus follow twitter.com/MetroBusTW
LEPs are driving economic growth across an economic area. They provide a means for local authorities to work together with business in order to quicken the economic recovery.