Local Transport Plan Raises Further Concern for the Green Belt

Debby and Emily in Sunningwell 2014

Debby and Emily in Sunningwell

This is a guest post by Emily Smith.

Sunningwell Parish Council and SPADE (Sunningwell Parishioners Against Damage to the Environment) held a consultation event the last weekend in March, to find out what residents thought about the County Council’s Local Tranposrt Plan (LTP).

There was an excellent turn out and some very involved discussions about the potential impact of the LTP and the Vale’s Local Plan on our villages.

Ideas outlined in the LTP include building new Park & Ride sites outside of Oxford’s ring road and creating a ‘diamond’ junction at Lodge Hill to help ease congestion in Abingdon and Oxford. If all of the proposals in the LTP consultation went ahead alongside the housing development proposed in the Vale’s Local Plan, residents are concerned that Sunningwell and the surrounding area could change dramatically. While many of the plans in the consultation are very vague, local people took this opportunity to tell the County Council what they think.

Concerns raised at the event included;

  • Loss of Green Belt land between Sunningwell and Abingdon
  • Noise and light pollution from a Park and Ride and Lorry Park being too close to existing housing
  • ‘Rat running’ through the villages to access the A34 and Park and Ride near Lodge Hill
  • Lack of traffic modelling to inform the Park & Ride strategy and lack of evidence that it would reduce congestion on the A34

Ideas to create cycle and ride facilities at Lodge Hill were discussed as well as alternative sites for a Park and Ride at Marcham or Milton interchanges and the need for Park & Ride services to complement local bus routes.

The consultation ends 2nd April. You can respond to the consultation via this link: https://consultations.oxfordshire.gov.uk/consult.ti/CO_LTP4/consultationHome

Debby adds: If you miss the deadline, you can still contact your county councillor to get your opinion into the decision makers. Contact me if you need help doing that.