MORE money has been promised for a key transport plan which should reduce congestion on the A34.

Oxfordshire County Council's cabinet officially approved giving money to a pot of £15.08m towards the 'diamond interchange' at the Lodge Hill interchange in Abingdon.

As part of the project, south-facing sliproads will be built, at a cost of £4.2m.

Council officers have previously said the work should be completed by 2020.

The council leader Ian Hudspeth said: "It’s good to see the Lodge Hill project, a project that has been in there for quite a while. Getting it (approved) is really good."

The cabinet officially approved the spending at a meeting on Tuesday.

For years residents, councillors and MPs have lobbied the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) in an effort to help ease congestion faced by town.

Communities secretary Sajid Javid announced a further £9.45m for the scheme in July, which will be given over four years. That means the entire budget for the project is just over £15m. 

Just months before, the possibility of the junction being completed was thrown into doubt after the Government snubbed a £382m bid by OxLEP for infrastructure projects and gave just £24m.

But the Government's funding pledge, along with the council's money, will mean it will now go ahead.

Developers who hope to build 950 homes in north Abingdon have made contributions to the scheme. Their money is included in that pledged by the council.

The proposal for the 950 homes was approved by Vale of White Horse District Council's planning committee in July.

It contains plans for at least 330 affordable homes, a new school, care home and community facilities.

They were initially approved by the council on the proviso that money was given to pay for the interchange.

The outline planning permission officially allows development on land north of Dunmore Road and Twelve Acre Drive.

Other facilities include up to 50 retirement homes for over-65s, a new primary school, an 80-bed care home, a nursery, a pub, shops, a public open space and sports pitches.

A community hub and a GP surgery will also be built on the new estate.

The completed site will also contain 900 houses, 50 retirement homes, a care home, a school, a GP surgery, a community hub, sports pitches and green spaces.