Work on Truro's sewer system has been pushed back and will be carried out in stages until March 2015 following a meeting with concerned businesses.
A roundtable meeting last week charied by Truro and Falmouth MP Sarah Newton agreed a way forward that will allow necessary sewer works to go ahead in central Truro whilst "minimising the impact" on local businesses.
Representatives from South West Water, Truro city councillors, the Truro BID team and a range of local businesses came together to discuss how concerns raised about proposed sewer works could be resolved.
The works, needed to enhance the existing sewer infrastructure, would affect roads in the Kenwyn Street area of Truro City Centre.
The Truro BID Team had expressed concern that the businesses they represent could suffer from considerable loss of trade as a result of the works.
After listening to the traders’ concerns at the meeting, South West Water agreed to push back the start date of the work, originally scheduled for April, and to carry out the project in phases until March 2015.
It was further agreed that the BID team would liaise closely with South West Water to take up any concerns raised by local businesses and that Mrs Newton would chair quarterly "stakeholder" meetings as the works progress.
Mrs Newton said: ‘"This is a challenging time for Truro and it is good to see the BID team, city council, Cornwall Council and local businesses working together with South West Water to agree a way forward.
"‘The works proposed by South West water represent a major investment in the city’s infrastructure, and will ensure that the local sewer system is fit for the twenty first century.
"I am hopeful that these works can now go ahead whilst causing the least possible disruption to hard working local business people, local residents, and the city as a whole.
"I am particularly pleased that the city’s past will be respected, as the works will now only go ahead following archaeological surveys of key sites- including the site of Truro’s mediaeval priory."
Graham Murphy, South West Water’s director of engineering, described the meeting as "really positive."
He said: "We are aware that the scheme has the potential to cause disruption, which is why we wanted to establish a liaison group to work closely with the local community to put in place measures to minimise the impact of this essential work."