Regrettably, the route options for the proposed new road are still being kept secret by local authorities and our elected councillors are colluding with that secrecy. Councillors have the authority to mandate full publication, overriding council officers.
None the less, it is intended to proceed with phase one of this proposal i.e the creation of another bridge over the A46 at Stoneleigh to create a roundabout junction. Some preliminary work clearing woodland has already been undertaken.
Going ahead with “phase 1” when there is no clarification of “phase 2” and “phase 3” of the road, is at best premature. And in fact, even the phase one proposal does not have the full planning permission approval required from the Department for Transport. A previous application to the DfT for that permission by Warwickshire County Council triggered a number of objections sent to the DfT. This triggered the announcement of a public enquiry. But, in response, that application was withdrawn by the council and the whole process has been started again. Previous objections have not been carried over. So there is only until midnight Monday 18th February to get new objections in to the Department for Transport.
Reasons for objecting to the proposal can be summarised as:
- The A46 Link Road is not a proposal of any Local Plan now in force in the areas it would run through. It is not shown on any public Proposals Map or Policies Map.
- The A46 Link Road would be highly damaging to the countryside south and west of Coventry, which is in the Green Belt. It would enable release of land for development which is currently agricultural land, woodland or available for recreation. The established pattern of urban areas surrounded by Green Belt would be undermined and eventually lost.
- The need for the A46 Link Road has not been shown; it appears to be promoted for development purposes rather than to meet any problem on the present road system. The existing main roads, A46, A45, and A452 have provided sufficient access and linkage for the present level of development and there is no current public pressure or demand for further road capacity. They have congestion at peak hours inevitably, but operate freely off-peak and at weekends; peak hour delays are not grounds for new road-building when tested against national transport policy to encourage use of other modes of transport.
- There has been no public consultation on the A46 Link Road, and no date for such consultation has been announced. Phase 1 has now been promoted by Highways Act Orders ahead of consultation on the proposed road as a whole. These Orders are the first opportunity those affected by or concerned about the A46 Link Road have to give their views on it or to lodge objections. While a planning permission for the Stoneleigh Junction enlargement has been granted by Warwickshire County Council to itself under deemed-permission regulations, that did not involve any independent appraisal or right to an independent hearing and does not restrict scope for objections to these Orders.
- Warwickshire County Council should be asked to either bring forward the overall A46 Link Road proposal, or if they cannot do this to assent to these Orders been held in suspension until the full A46 Link Road is published and a public inquiry into the full proposal can be held. If not, a public inquiry into these Orders is requested.
Originally Posted 18th January 2019
The following map has been produced by Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council and shows a proposed route for an A46 link road (dashed line in red). You can enlarge this plan to full screen size by clicking the image...
The source for that map is the Solihull Local Plan Review, 17th January 2019. A copy of that document, which includes that map, can be found on the Cheswick Green Residents' Association website, here:
The following map has been produced by a local resident and shows possible speculative routes for the link road beyond the boundaries of the plan above...
Previous Posts on This Subject
October 2018 - the secret collusion scandal