THE council has continued its commitment to new relief roads to ease congestion.

The long-talked about northern and western relief roads for Durham city, which were both strongly criticised by an independent planning inspector following the public examination of the previous version of the plan, are both included in the new proposals.

A western relief road would link the B6302 near Stonebridge to the A691 at Sniperley while the northern one would connect Newton Hall and the A690 east of Belmont.

The council hopes the roads would reduce city centre traffic, making it possible to reduce Milburngate Bridge to two lanes, creating additional space for pedestrians and cyclists, and improving air quality.

Proposals for a relief road for Barnard Castle – which had not been included in the last version of the plan – have been added.

The council has identified land connecting the A688 and A67 but said delivery depends on government funding.

The plan also includes a proposal for a new access road for Bowburn Industrial Estate, to serve current and future developments around the village, including Integra61.

Other transport policies include getting a new railway station for Horden, near Peterlee and safeguarding the Leamside Line - which it is estimated will cost £300m to bring back into use.