'There is no better project to win': Long-awaited Ely Southern Bypass up for regional 'community benefit' award

PUBLISHED: 14:55 18 February 2019

An aerial view of the Ely Southern Bypass. Picture: ROYAL INSTITUTION OF CHARTERED SURVEYORS.

An aerial view of the Ely Southern Bypass. Picture: ROYAL INSTITUTION OF CHARTERED SURVEYORS.

Archant

It might have been £13 million over budget and 20 years in the pipeline but the hard work has paid off as Ely's Southern Bypass is up for a regional award.

The bypass is shortlisted in the community benefit category of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) awards.

Speaking to BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, Councillor Anna Bailey said: “I’m really pleased. The category is exactly what this bypass is all about.

“We all know it’s a beautiful, epic structure with its wonderful walkway. The community impact element has been huge; it’s seen so many people use it already and it’s changed the lives of local people for the better.

“At the height of the building work, people from Soham and Fordham were taking 50 minutes to an hour to get to Ely.

“That is all gone now – it’s now down to a reliable 10/11 minutes, back to how it should be.

“The congestion around that part of Ely has just gone, the air quality is so much better and living in that area, generally, has changed massively.

“There is going to be no better project to win this award. It’s a different project, because it’s an infrastructure project, but it’s something that has changed the lives of thousands and thousands of people.”

The awards are held to celebrate some of the East of England’s most loved built environment projects in the east of England.

If the project wins the award for its category, it will be put forward for the regional project of the year title, which is awarded to a scheme that “demonstrates outstanding best practice and an exemplary commitment to adding value to its local area” said a spokesman for the awards.

All regional winners go on to compete against other regional winners at the national RICS Awards Grand Final in November 2019, for the chance to be crowned the overall UK winner in their respective category.

The RICS Awards 2019, East of England, will be held on Wednesday May 15 at The Apex in Bury St Edmonds.

For more information visit www.rics.org/eastawards.

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