Councillors agreed to use powers to buy land against the owner’s wishes if necessary.
Calderdale Cabinet agreed to use compulsory purchase order (CPO) powers to acquire land at Christ Church, the Whitehall Pub and land to the rear of the Tesco Express, all in Hipperholme.
Calderdale says work is needed to solve the “well-known bottleneck” of the crossroads which is “restricting economic growth and providing a barrier to the provision of new jobs and housing within the district”.
But land owners have refused to sell up.
Clr Barry Collins, Cabinet member for economy and environment, said: “This is in principle only... We will put everything back out to a thorough public consultation, there will be time for a discussion and comments about improving it as well.
“We all understand the needs of the community that nothing is done to harm the quality of life environment, but the council has got other areas to consider, it must consider traffic and congestion, it must consider air quality. The carbon dioxide levels are above the permitted level and we cannot not take account of that.”
Stephen Firth, a resident objecting, said the tactics were ‘heavy-handed’ and the act of a ‘council unable to get its own way’.
Clr Tim Swift, council leader, said: “It is not heavy handed but a recognition that we have to make significant improvements at that junction and that we need to acquire additional land to do that.
“We are being clear about what may happen.”
Clr Colin Raistrick, Ind, said: “It’s the only junction where people can cross diagonally meaning all traffic has to stop - we can easily solve that.”
The £3.3m project will include removing some of the parking bays, moving loading bays, and improved pedestrian crossings. There will also be a yellow box junction on Leeds Road.
A final decision will rest with full council at a later date.
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