Work on compulsory purchase orders which will pave the way for two major Fife infrastructure projects is expected to begin within days, The Courier can reveal.
Several parcels of land will need to be bought if the Northern Link Road and Western Distributor Road in Dunfermline are to be delivered, it has emerged.
Councillors on Fife’s assets, property and facilities committee will almost certainly give the green light to start the complex CPO process when they meet on Thursday.
No figures have been placed on the project but Fife Council has warned costs could spiral due to the price of land, compensation and other costs payable to owners, lessees and occupiers, staff time and consultants’ fees and the potential for a public enquiry or lands tribunal hearings.
Ken Gourlay, head of assets, transportation and environment, said the work was “essential” in supporting Dunfermline’s strategic development area programme, which is deemed to be one of the largest areas of growth in Scotland.
He said: “Most of the transportation interventions will be delivered on land in the ownership of Fife Council or a small number of developers.
“However, a number of other sites will be required to complete delivery. Over the coming months due diligence will be undertaken with ownership investigations carried out and negotiations initiated.
“To ensure the delivery of this key infrastructure is not compromised, in parallel with negotiations, it is proposed that Fife Council commence appropriate compulsory purchase orders.
“It is likely that further committee authority will be sought once there is greater knowledge of the requirements.”
The two roads are seen as key to Dunfermline’s strategic development area programme, which has the potential to provide up to 8,000 homes, 80 hectares of employment land, five new primary schools and £36 million in developer contributions to secondary education facilities in the Dunfermline area, and other community facilities.
The proposed Northern Link Road will aim to provide a convenient route between large-scale development in north Dunfermline and Halbeath for the M90 and A92.
That project will effectively link the Halbeath Bypass to the A823-A907 Carnock Road, while the Western Distributor Road is to run from Grange Drive to Limekilns Road, Pittencrieff Street and then on to William Street and the Rumblingwell Junction.
To enable that to happen, however, land at Halbeath Retail Park and Kingseat Road in Dunfermline, land at the former Townhill Power Station, a house at Glenavon at Townhill Loch, and two parcels of farmland to the north of Kingseat Road and east of Townhill Road will be required to deliver the Northern Link Road, which will run north-west to south-east across the north of Dunfermline where it will link with a new railway bridge provided by Fife Council.
The report to councillors also confirms land at Pittencrieff Street, on the west side of Coal Road and McKane Park, and on both sides of William Street will need to be acquired for the Western Distributor Road.