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  1. ITV Report

Plans to demolish Wales' most polluted street given go ahead

Plans to demolish one of the UK's most polluted streets have been given the green light.

Caerphilly Council will purchase the worst affected homes in Hafod-Yr-Ynys, Crumlin and demolish them due to the high air pollution.

The road has been described as one of the UK's worst polluted areas outside London with the levels of pollution far exceeding World Health Organisation guidelines.

The council will offer residents 150% of the value of their homes.

Last year, it was revealed there were 69 units of nitrogen dioxide in the air. The legal unit is 40.

One of the major concerns of the residents was that the market valuation of their properties was significantly less than what they felt was a fair price to enable them to move home.

We fully recognise that health and wellbeing is paramount, but we also did not want to see any of the residents facing financial difficulties as a result of the compulsory purchase process.

We welcome this decision and would like to thank the community for their co-operation and feedback in helping us agree this way forward.

– Cllr Dave Poole, Lead of Council

"The front of our houses look so dirty - they're like slums. We've worked hard and spent thousands - but we're just giving up", resident Martin Brown told ITV News in 2018.

The Welsh Government told the council in February 2018 it needed to work out what to do about the pollution problem. A compulsory purchase of the south side of the street was one of the options given to the council as well as introducing banning lorries between peak times, and a clean air zone.

Mr Brown said he also had serious concerns about the safety of residents, due to the volume and speed of traffic in the area.

"If they do knock them down, which I wish they would. At least we could go somewhere where we're not in fear of our lives. It's frightening"

The A472 between Pontypool and Newbridge sees more than 21,000 vehicles pass through it every day.

We fully recognise that health and wellbeing is paramount, but we also did not want to see any of the residents facing financial difficulties as a result of the compulsory purchase process.

– CLLR ELUNED STENNER, CABINET MEMBER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND PUBLIC PROTECTION

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