A SCHEME to build a congestion-busting road to boost economic growth around key existing and future employment sites has received a £500,000 injection.

The funding from Darlington Borough Council will contribute towards the building of a link road between Yarm Road and Tornado Way, which regularly suffers rush hour tailbacks due to the amount of businesses in the area.

Council leaders said the importance of the road improvements in the area was underlined by support from firms such as Nobia, DB Symmetry, PD Ports, Darlington EE, Teesside University, the Disclosure and Baring Service, Arriva North East, Business Central Darlington and Darlington College.

An officers’ report to the authority’s cabinet stated the link road “would enable the full potential of the area wide solution to be realised”.

It added: “The assessment undertaken shows over the next ten years the full package of infrastructure improvements have the potential of unlocking up to 4,300 jobs, £17.5m gross value added and 2,600 homes.”

The officers said the council’s £500,000 of funding was a “relatively small contribution when compared to the public benefits”.

Councillor Nick Wallis told the meeting while the council secured more than £5m for improvements to road junctions at McMullen Road, Lingfield Way and Haughton Road, there was another opportunity with the building of Symmetry Park for a relief road, running parallel to the A66.

The leisure and environment boss said the scheme was vital due to the amount of businesses locating in Morton Palms Business Park and Symmetry Park.

Cllr Wallis said: “I think it will really help with congestion in the area. It will give drivers and lorries different ways of getting onto the A66 and out of Darlington.

“At peak times drivers often experience considerable delays. That’s not good for businesses or residents, particularly those who live in McMullen Road and those who work there and want to get home for their tea.”

Cllr Wallis said the council was also working with businesses locating in the area to consider adopting shift patterns that was “not a standard 9am to 5pm to ease pressure on the roads.

He said: “Changing shift patterns will help considerably in the area.”