Council revises its capital investment programme for the year

Bridgend County Borough Council has agreed to revise its capital programme for 2020-21 to take account of factors such as the impact of the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic.

The revisions will see funding associated with some schemes – including coastal risk management, the development of the former Llynfi washery site and elements of the Porthcawl regeneration – move into the capital programme for 2021-22.

Other investments, such as £2.8m for a new highways depot, will move into 2021-22 to take account of changes in their delivery plans.

The revised capital programme will total £53.5m for 2020-21. Of this, £27.8m will be met from council resources, and £25.7m from external funding.

It includes £5m for the Maesteg Town Hall redevelopment project, £1.7m in carriageway resurfacing and footpath repairs, and £4.6m for services ranging from street lighting and bridge strengthening to disabled facilities grants and highways structural works.

Energy-efficient street lighting is benefitting from a £1.4m investment, and £1.6m has been marked for the establishment of a new community recycling centre based in Pyle.

More than £905,000 is being invested in a new multi-agency social service hub, and £816,000 is supporting the development of new Welsh-medium nursery provision in Bettws, Bridgend, Ogmore Valley and Porthcawl.

A 438,000 investment into additional learning needs at Cefn Cribwr Primary is ongoing, and £30,000 is being spent on extending cemeteries based at Porthcawl and Cornelly.

Since the capital programme was originally agreed, a number new schemes have been created which have been incorporated into the investment plans.

These include £806,000 from Welsh Government for additional highways refurbishment work, £500,000 to support the replacement of fleet vehicles, £300,000 to support the development of 10 affordable new homes and two new commercial units in Bridgend town centre.

A further £619,000 will support sustainable forms of transport following a rise in cycling and walking during the pandemic. More than £180,000 will help deliver adaptations to enable people to live independently, and £222,000 will be invested in the second phase of the Coity Higher Community Safe Routes scheme.

Welsh Government has also made £2.4m available for the development of active travel routes. The council is using around £1.6m of this to provide improvements linking Bridgend, Coychurch, Pencoed and Pencoed College, and is dividing the work into phases so that it can be completed next year in the event the funding remains available.

Other new funding that has become available includes £240,000 for investment in ICT, £200,000 to support work on the Pyle Park and Ride Metro and Penprysg road bridge, and £50,000 for minor works at Bryngarw House and Pencoed Library.

Deputy Leader Councillor Hywel Williams said: “While the coronavirus pandemic has had an inevitable impact upon the council’s spending plans, I’m sure that residents will be pleased to note that a significant amount of investment continues to take place.

“Part of this impact has meant that in a few areas, we have had to move funding into 2021-22 instead, but remain committed towards carrying out the work and delivering on those initiatives.”