The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) has expressed concern over the Draft National Networks [Road & Rail] National Policy Statement. CPRE claims the policy statement outlines road-building which will make unnecessary inroads into countryside, when it should be seeing this as an opportunity for improving rural trains and more sustainable transport methods like better cycling routes.
The consultation deadline ends on 26 February 2014.
CPRE drafted this letter of concern to the Department of Transport, for members of the public to sign with their name and address if they so choose to back the campaign. Paul Hudson – local resident and long-time Friends of the Park supporter, signed and sent the letter, and invites you to do so too.
Department for Transport
Zone 3/23 Great Minster House
33 Horseferry Road
London SW1P 4DR
Dear Department for Transport,
I am writing to you because I am really worried about the draft National Networks National Policy Statement you are consulting on. You are:
• Making official forecasts of traffic increasing by 46% by 2040 unchallengeable, even though traffic has stabilised at 2003 levels and needs to be controlled.
• Return to Roman-style road building with roads that plough straight through Green Belts, nationally treasured landscapes, ancient woodland and wildlife sites.
While this proposal is a terrible threat to the countryside, this document, the first national road and rail policy, is a fantastic opportunity to plan transport better.
Instead I would like the policy to:
• Commit to extending the rural rail network and improve its resilience. This would reduce problems in future from flooding that has recently been so devastating.
• Require better facilities on the main road network to get new bus and coach services moving and, for shorter distances, to make cycling and walking safer and easier. The UK has some of the lowest cycling and bus usage in Europe, so there’s huge scope to do this.
• Roll out nationally the measures used so successfully at the 2012 Olympics to prevent congestion by reducing the need to travel and demand for road space. These would be particularly effective to manage growth of van traffic.