A Welsh Government illustration of the route of the new part of the Link Road

A Welsh Government illustration of the route of the new part of the Link Road

Work has finally resumed on the construction another section of  Cardiff’s  Link Road  – the building of which began in the 1970s and – 40 years on – remains still  unfinished .

For Penarth motorists heading to – say, London – it always takes ages to get through Cardiff . Currently the road comes to a dead-end after the Butetown Tunnels at the Queen’s Gate roundabout .

The route of this latest section of the Link Road skirts the controversial Viridor recycling plant. (Photo David Moorcraft)

Work has now started on extending the route of the Cardiff  Link Road beyond the Butetown Tunnels further east – and skirting the controversial Viridor recycling plant. (Photo David Moorcraft)

This month, however, work started again to continue the route of the stalled road a kilometre further East to the Oceanway Interchange” – which has been dubbed the “roundabout to nowhere”   .

The complete route is known by various names – the A4323, the Peripheral Distributor RoadFfordd Ddosbarthu Ymylol, the Cardiff Link Road, Ffordd Gyswllt Caerdydd and  was originally designed to be a modern dual carriageway which would become Cardiff’s “beltway”.

The idea was to provide a means of avoiding the congested centre of Cardiff for traffic heading from places like  Penarth –  to Newport, Bristol or London .  When the road was first planned no one anticipated the growth of traffic which has occurred since them.

The first part of it – the “Southern Way Link Road” was completed back in 1978 . The most recent part to be added – the Butetown Link Road –  was opened in 1995, but nothing much happened after that.

Work on the “Eastern Bay Link Road” began last week and is due to be completed  by April 2017. Eventually it will form part of the “Cardiff ring road system”. The only part of it which will not be dual carriageway is the (existing) East Moors Viaduct.


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  1. penarthblog says:

    I don’t understand the need for roundabouts, it’s a cheap opposition.

  2. penarthblog says:

    Option not opposition, damn phone, lol!

  3. Martin gossage says:

    When it’s finished take the Cardiff half marathon there !! Penarth is not a suburb of Cardiff !(yet)

  4. Peter Church says:

    Sadly this extra bit of road will just move the traffic queues. What is needed is joined up roads not the odd kilometre of dual carriage-way.
    PS it will take two years to build it, just under a day per metre.

  5. sjleworthy says:

    It will knock off a 5-10 min detour up and around the wharf. I’m all up for it 🙂

  6. David Moorcraft says:

    I suppose this can be seen as the cheapest “temporary” fix to take the load off the Central Link area, and perhaps the flyover over the QueensGate roundabout will be subsequently added in that halcyon future when Cardiff Council has the money to complete the dualling of Rover Way and out onto the A48M , to relieve Newport Road congestion.
    I won’t be around to see it !

  7. AK says:

    Won’t make any difference to Penarth + once all the apartments are complete by the flyover/sports village etc, we’ll not be able to get out onto the link road at all!

  8. Timothy Hughes says:

    I may be wrong but I think the route west was completed first to allow a rapid connection between the then glass tube factory, near to what is now Viridor, and the Sony factory in Bridgend.

  9. whatsoccurin says:

    it seems that the road past the “steel works” and Rover Way traveller site is not yet included-as part of a major ring road in a capital City this is an embarrassment-and I can remember when the A48 Cowbridge Road was the major route through South Wales!

    • AK says:

      Then they built a dual carriageway to bypass Cowbridge, and reduced the speed limit from 60 to 50 on the dual section.

      Great value!

  10. Ian Perry says:

    The queues on the A4232 last Thursday were worse than usual, but it’s not unusual for there to be queues.. In fact, after 3:30pm each weekday, you can expect delays north bound on the A4232.

    The extension of this road will inevitably result in more traffic on the existing road, and more congestion, more delays, more lost productivity… Huge economic and social loses for Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan.

    The land being used for the new road, could (no SHOULD) have been used to link a new railway station at Rover Way, with Cardiff Bay with light rail, thus making journey to Cardiff Bay from the east much easier than the current set up of having to change at Central for a train to Queen street, and changing again to travel to Cardiff Bay… Or wandering out of Cardiff Central, to find the Bay Car bus service to the Bay – an uninviting prospect even when the bus station was/is directly outside of the bus station.

    A new railway station at Rover Way would put pressure on the car orientated retail developments along Newport Road to become more efficient, with more dense retail units, and perhaps offices and associated cafes and coffee shops replacing the existing warehouse units.

    For all the talk of high speed rail in the UK that will result in even higher ticket prices than we see now… Only travel times between stations will decrease – and at a high cost! It’s beyond the capabilities of those currently making decisions in Wales that we will live with for decades, to consider the entire journey that a person makes. Reducing the time it takes to reach a station (and increasing the ease, comfort and convenience of reaching stations) is far cheaper and more effective than providing expensive, faster trains.

    Thinking on mobility/transport/planning in Wales is firmly STUCK in the 1980’s.

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