Have your say on improvements to Black Cat roundabout near Bedford

Next round of hearings unveiled

By Clare Turner
Tuesday, 23rd November 2021, 11:00 am

National Highways have announced the next round of hearings for the proposed A428 Black Cat to Caxton Gibbet improvements.

With the planning examination process for the scheme now entering its fourth month, the hearings will take place on Tuesday, November 30, Wednesday, December 1 and Thursday, December 2; with a reserved hearing date on December 7, if needed.

The A428 scheme, which proposes a new 10-mile dual carriageway from the Black Cat Roundabout on the A1 through to Caxton Gibbet junction in addition to a number of new junctions and improvements, is currently going through its Development Consent Order (DCO) public examination process.

How the Black Cat roundabout will look

This is a six-month process when a panel of experts from the Planning Inspectorate, known as the Examining Authority, scrutinises the DCO application.

The Examining Authority has been assessing feedback from the public and stakeholders through written representations and during the three rounds of hearings completed to date.

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Video shows how new A428 Black Cat roundabout in Bedfordshire will look

Following the end of the six-month examination stage - due to complete in February 2022 - the panel will have three months to write a recommendation report and submit it to the Secretary of State for Transport, who has up to three months to make the final decision.

If it’s given the green light, the scheme will improve journeys between Milton Keynes and Cambridge.

The hearings are being carried out virtually. People can listen in via livestream by visiting the Planning Inspectorate's website where a link to join will be posted shortly before the hearings begin.

National Highways will also share links to the hearings  from their A428 Facebook and Twitter pages. The recordings of the meetings will also be posted on the Planning Inspectorate’s website shortly after they have finished, to allow you to listen in if you can’t join live.