A new multi-million pound roundabout project to improve traffic flow and unlock potential for growth at Westcott Ventre Park was officially opened on Friday 2nd October.
Construction work on the £2 million roundabout and access scheme started in January 2020 to replace the former T-junction with a new dedicated access to the Park from the A41.
This critical investment in infrastructure was funded through a partnership between Buckinghamshire Council, Westcott Venture Park, Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership and Aylesbury Vale Enterprise Zone, to achieve the following:
The roundabout scheme partners gathered for an official ceremony to mark the official opening of the project which significantly creates opportunities to expand the area’s economy.
The project also involved Westcott undertaking substantial environmental work to shelter over 100 newts to create a new link road route from the roundabout into the Park. The road is now operational and has been named Wellington Drive, a nod to its history as a base for training Wellington bomber aircrew.
Rod Mordey, Director at PATRIZIA explains: “Once the centre of the UK’s Cold War Rocket Research, Westcott is now home to a thriving eco system of companies and our pride in its rich heritage has driven the desire to embrace the future.
“This new roundabout and access road is a major step forward in the evolution of the Park as it will unlock what will become the next stages of the development. It will provide new opportunities for existing tenants looking to develop and grow, as well as attracting new businesses, bringing more jobs to the area.
“The former entrance to Westcott Venture Park is now closed which will make a big contribution to safety for residents of Westcott and Ashendon villages.”
Leader of Buckinghamshire Council, Martin Tett said: “This is an excellent demonstration of great partnership working to deliver a scheme that helps fully unlock the economic potential of the Westcott Enterprise Zone. As well as improving road safety and helping keep heavy lorries off our local village roads, the scheme’s greatest contribution will be helping to improve the area’s future economic growth potential, which is so crucial to Buckinghamshire, particularly in these difficult and challenging times.”
Andrew M. Smith, Chair of Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership, said: "We are delighted with news of the completion of the new A41 Westcott roundabout, which will enable the Westcott Enterprise Zone to move ahead with plans for a £3.2 million innovation centre, a high-tech business space for world-leading space propulsion and satellite industries. The site has the potential to become a major hub for the UK space programme and the application of 5G innovation technologies.”
Covering 650 acres, Westcott Venture Park is occupied by more than 80 businesses, employing over 600 staff. It is one of three sites in Aylesbury Vale's Enterprise Zone and is recognised as an integral part of the UK Space sector growth strategy.
Westcott played a key role in the First Space Age, with many of the key technological developments for rocket engines being proven at the site. The UK Space Agency’s National Propulsion Test Facility is currently being developed onsite and a new Innovation Centre within the Westcott Space Cluster is soon to open for occupation.
Rod Mordey concludes: “Our partnership with Buckinghamshire Council has demonstrated successful working on funding, design and delivery expertise and we are delighted with the work carried out by Transport for Buckinghamshire and C. Dowdy Contractors in the delivery of the scheme. This project sends out a positive message to cutting edge technological innovators wanting to locate here.”
Photo from left to right, front line: Andrew Smith, Chairman - Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership, Sian Thomas, Network Improvements Team Manager - Transport for Buckinghamshire, Martin Tett, Leader - Buckinghamshire Council
Photo from left to right, back line: Oliver Jones, Operations Manager - C Dowdy (Contractor) Ltd, Jack Mayhew, Lead Growth & Strategy Officer - Buckinghamshire Council and Nigel Mackenzie - Westcott Venture Park Project Manager