Footbridge fiasco claim

THOUSANDS of pounds has been wasted on a 'ridiculous' consultant's report which failed to include vital information, it has been claimed. A report commissioned by Town Hall planners omitted details about possible flood risks linked to an affordable housi

THOUSANDS of pounds has been wasted on a 'ridiculous' consultant's report which failed to include vital information, it has been claimed. A report commissioned by Town Hall planners omitted details about possible flood risks linked to an affordable housing development in Well Park, Congresbury.North Somerset councillors have requested a footbridge between the Knightstone Housing Association development and the Millennium Green in order for the project to go ahead. Recommendations from the Environment Agency and the West Mendip Drainage Board, ought to have been included in the original report as the footbridge crosses a ditch, according to district councillor Tom Leimdorfer.He said: "Anyone could have written this report - it doesn't include basic information which should have been there in the first place."I voted for the £3,000 report because official estimates for the cost of a footbridge linking the new houses to the Millennium Green were entirely fanciful."Cllr Leimdorfer says he obtained an independent quote of £16,000 for the bridge, but council officers estimated the cost above £70,000.He added: "A deal between North Somerset Council and the developers meant £6,000 would go towards the new footbridge, but we were not told the consultants were being paid using money which was intended for the footbridge."A council spokesman said: "A few years ago a bridge at Congresbury was costed out in the region of £75,000, but it was believed this was for a far more substantial steel structure. "The type of structures currently proposed for the footpath link range up to £24,000."The decision on whether the development should go ahead has now been deferred until the necessary agencies have been contacted.


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