Dorset Council has requested a government study into the potential for dualling the A350.
The council is keen to explore whether the route can be upgraded as a link between the M4 and Poole. The project could be considered for the government’s five-year road improvement strategy from 2025.
But the countryside charity CPRE say a major road project would be at odds with the principle of the Cranborne Chase Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. And they say it contradicts three strategy papers which recognise the special nature of the Cranborne Chase AONB. One of those policies, the Local Enterprise Partnership Strategic Economic Plan, was signed-off by three North Dorset MPs.
Dorset councillor Ray Bryan oversees highways and transport. He says, “We are keeping an open mind and we’re now working with the Department for Transport, Highways England and other authorities and stakeholders on the study to look into all options.”
Dorset Council also wants the government to consider improvements for the A37, A338 and A34 routes.