MP Says ""We Must Develop Plans For A Southern Bypass"" For Ely
THERE has been a lot of debate in recent issues of the Ely Standard about a southern by-pass for Ely. Some local politicians have even called for it to be scrapped. That is easy for them to say, (especially as I understand that at least one doesn t even
THERE has been a lot of debate in recent issues of the Ely Standard about a southern by-pass for Ely. Some local politicians have even called for it to be scrapped. That is easy for them to say, (especially as I understand that at least one doesn't even drive!) but anyone who regularly travels in or out of Ely past the station knows how serious the hold-ups can be as lorries queue for the level crossing.
For an individual car driver this may cause nothing more than frustration but for the lorries it is a real issue of time and money, not to mention the pollution from all the stationary vehicles. No wonder that many lorries try to avoid the area by using the A1123 from Soham through to Stretham then Wilburton and Haddenham and up to Witcham Toll. This problem is bad enough already but when I read that the county council were proposing to designate the A1123 as an advised alternative route for HGVs I really did throw a wobbly! Along with Cllr Bill Hunt I protested to the county and I am pleased to report that they have already decided not to so designate it.
This decision is a welcome relief for the people living on the route but it demonstrates how the Ely issue has a knock-on effect for other roads. In fact, there is also evidence that the Ely traffic itself is actually a knock-on effect from lorries heading west to Huntingdon or beyond and trying to avoid the A14 north of Cambridge. So these things must be seen together rather than as separate issues. The long-awaited A14 improvements should start in 2012, later than planned but nevertheless welcome. It could be argued that we should wait to see whether it makes any difference to Ely but that ignores the length of time these things take to plan and deliver. It takes 13 years on average to build a new road so we should not stop now.
This inevitably brings me to the question of money. Of course there is not going to be much public money for roads in the next few years whoever forms the next government but realistically a southern by-pass will not be built anyway for several years by which time we all hope the economy has recovered, and money will be able to be made available for projects like this.
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We really must develop plans for a by-pass to the south of Ely. There may be more than one possible route but to refuse to do so altogether would not only cause even more serious inconvenience for residents but over-congested transport links will, ultimately, cause business to by-pass Ely altogether.
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WHAT DO YOU THINK?
Should plans for the Southern By-pass be scrapped?
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