HUNDREDS of jobs look set to be created in Pocklington, thanks to the opening of the new roundabout on the A1079.
The £2 million junction was officially opened on Thursday and is the first completed stage of what developers describe as being “exciting news for Pocklington”.
A detailed planning application is due to be submitted within weeks for major commercial development on the section of land between the old Hodsow Lane junction with the A1079 and where the new road connects to the roundabout.
Built by local contractor Wold Construction, the roundabout was financed between East Riding Council, local landowner Henry Thirsk and Pocklington-based developers Broadhelm Venture, who are spearheading the next phase of the ambitious plan.
Jonathan Atkinson, a director for Broadhelm, says that, thanks to the new roundabout, a number of new businesses have already declared an interest in the two-hectare site, which he calls the southern area, and which could potentially create up to 100 jobs.
However, he hopes it will then trigger further interest in the land due for development to the east and north side of the existing industrial estate which covers a further 9.3 hectares.
He says it could significantly increase the size of the estate and has the potential to generate hundreds more jobs.
Mr Atkinson also confirmed that when sufficient interest has been secured for the northern area, the much-anticipated new link road to the existing industrial estate will then be provided as part of the development proposals for this phase.
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He said: “The road improvements have created some serious interest in our development proposals and as a result it is expected that a new planning application for the road frontage southern area will be submitted in the next few weeks.
“This is exciting news for Pocklington as it is expected that many new job opportunities will emerge in the not too distant future.
“It’s tremendous that years of effort has come to fruition and we look forward to many more years of commercial development in Pocklington which will hopefully provide jobs and prosperity for the town.”
While the commercial opportunities could give the local economy a much-needed boost, the improved safety aspect has also been welcomed.
There are high hopes the roundabout could be used a catalyst for further improvements along on the A1079, a road which has become synonymous with serious road traffic accidents over the years.
Pocklington ward councillor Kay West led the official opening ceremony on Thursday in her role as chairman of East Riding Council, and said: “This roundabout is really going to affect people in this area, and we are so pleased it has happened.
“The roundabout will help relieve congestion in the area and improve safety and access.
“The old junction meant motorists had to wait for long periods for a break in traffic, but the new roundabout will mean less waiting and make it easier for traffic to join the A1079.
“It is showing the way forward for other areas on the A1079 and we hope we can make further improvements.”
This was echoed by Mayor of Pocklington, Councillor Graham Perry, who said: “We have seen some improvements to the A1079 in terms of access that we did not ever expect to see so we really do welcome that.”