The MetroWest Phase 1 project proposes to re-open the Portishead rail line with stations at Portishead and Pill and operate train services to Bristol Temple Meads and beyond. 

The project also entails providing a train service for the Severn Beach line along with local stations between Bristol Temple Meads and Bath Spa. The project is being promoted by North Somerset Council on behalf of the West of England councils; Bath & North East Somerset, Bristol City and South Gloucestershire. The project forms part of a wider MetroWest programme to deliver strategic enhancements to the local rail network over the next 10 years.

Ardent has been providing land assembly advice to North Somerset Council on this scheme for several years with a view to submitting the DCO in late 2019. Ardent has been involved with defining the route through optioneering advice, land referencing and engaging with landowners. Ardent has produced heads of terms for leases and advance acquisition of land. The team have also drafted and agreed Statements of Common Ground where relevant and beneficial in advance of submitting the DCO including compulsory acquisition powers.

We have used our knowledge from numerous previous projects in Bristol to value and negotiate with landowners and their agents, building on existing relationships with those professional representatives. Ardent has produced a property cost estimate providing a land budget for the client which also informs compensation packages to be offered to landowners in agreements. Ardent has integrated itself fully in the project team to improve efficiency and delivery of the work package.