Construction work has started on the northern section of the Bedford Western Bypass and mayor Dave Hodgson was there to lend some muscle to the job.
The Mayor of Bedford Borough attended a sod cutting event to mark the start of work on Friday, along with representatives from the developers Breheny Civil Engineering and external funding partners The Department for Transport, The Home and Communities Agency and South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership.
It means the 50 year wait for a completed western bypass is finally coming to an end after Bedford Borough Council broke the logjam blocking the final section via a compulsory purchase order and a series of successful negotiations.
Mr Hodgson said: “We are delighted to have overcome the series of obstacles which had blocked this vital project for Bedford. Work will now begin on a scheme which will bring new investment and jobs to Bedford Borough, while making it easier for all road users to get around.”
The final phase will link the A4280 at Bromham Road with the A6 at Clapham. It will reduce the volume of traffic travelling through the town by completing a route that will link all the way from the A428 south of Bedford to the A6 heading north of the town.
The £18.6 million scheme is due to be completed in 2016.