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CPRE Bedfordshire condemns proposed A6-M1 Link Road

Thursday, 11 April 2019 09:06

 

The proposed new A6 – M1 Link Road that will slice through Chilterns Area of Natural Outstanding Beauty north of Luton is totally unnecessary and will not reduce traffic congestion say CPRE Bedfordshire.

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*Update* CPRE Bedfordshire's full response can be downloaded at the bottom of the page.

 

Central Bedfordshire Council has put forward plans to build a new road north of Luton linking the A6 to junction 11a of the M1.


The road will carve through the Green Belt countryside north of Luton and along the edge of the hugely important Chilterns AONB – the “green lungs” for the people of Luton.


It will be very close to the beautiful Sundon Ancient Woodland destroying the tranquillity of the area.


Central Bedfordshire Council (CBC) say that it will reduce traffic flows and improve access to Luton but in fact the whole point of the road is to enable the development of a huge Rail Freight Interchange close to Junction 11a at Sundon. This will in fact encourage more heavy trucks to use the road and the A6.
More vehicles will be routed on to the M1 which is already operating well over capacity.


More cars and trucks will be encouraged to use the A6 north & south, which is already overcrowded.


CBC say that the new road will also support the development of 4,000 new homes (about the same size as Ampthill) on Green Belt land between the north of Luton and the new road.


This housing development will itself generate a huge amount of new traffic.


The crazy thing is that just about 2 miles to the west of this site on the other side of the M1, CBC gave planning permission 4 years ago for a massive 5,000 new homes at Houghton Regis North - the biggest single housing development site anywhere in Bedfordshire.


To date not one single home has been built despite £200m of public money spent on the A5 – M1 Link Road and the Woodside Link Road.


We say that CBC’s priority should be to build the 5,000 new homes already given permission at Houghton Regis North and not trash important Green Belt and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty with another new road that will get jammed up as quickly as it’s built.


A CPRE Bedfordshire spokesperson said:
“This new road, the Rail Freight Interchange and the 4,000 new houses will bring development right up to the edge of the Chilterns AONB. It will destroy the tranquillity and the setting of these beautiful hills and will do absolutely nothing to improve traffic flows – if anything traffic flows, particularly along the A6 (north & south), will be increased!


CBC has completely ignored Government planning policy which requires that development on the Green Belt should only take place in exceptional circumstances and that “Great weight should be given to conserving and enhancing landscape and scenic beauty in Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty which has the highest status of protection”.


CBC believe that all development is good development no matter what the impact on the natural environment - a very old fashioned position to take these days when everyone else is looking to minimise environmental destruction. CBC should be looking for sustainable alternatives.”

 

The application for the A6-M1 Link Road can be read here.

Objections must be in by 31st May - information about how to comment can be read here. You can submit your response here.

 

*****

CPRE Bedfordshire guidance on the technical objections:

1. Development is contrary to paragraph 172 in the National Planning Policy Framework

2. Development does not comply with paragraph 136 of NPPF

3. CBC have not examined fully all other reasonable alternative options as required by paragraph 137

 

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