Tackling Bath’s transport problems is keeping a lot of publicly-elected officials busy at present. But while B&NES Cabinet retire to consider an ever-mounting pile of reports and submissions regarding a Park and Ride site to the East of the city – Ben Howlett – our local MP – has been talking about ways of diverting heavier goods vehicles with the Prime Minister.
Further to his question at Prime Minister’s Question time – regarding the PM’s commitment to look at the missing A36/46 link road to the east of Bath – Ben has now received a letter from the Prime Minister confirming that:
“It is crucial that we make sure that the key roads that serve our constituencies are performing reliably, in order to support jobs and economic growth. That is why we recently announced that work is starting on preparing the next Road Investment Strategy, which will cover strategic road investments beyond 2020, to make further improvements to our roads.
Central to these preparations will be Highways England’s Route Strategies, covering its entire network, including the West of England around Bath and Bristol.”
Ben said of the letter:
“I am delighted the Prime Minister has taken the time to write and I am committed to following through this project in conjunction with B&NES Council and Highways England to ensure this much-needed link road is included with the next Road Investment Strategy tranch.
I recognise that a possible link road has been previously investigated, but traffic through Bath has continued to increase and it is essential we look at all possible solutions to Bath’s congestion woes. As England’s only World Heritage City I believe all local residents have a duty to ensure we do what we can to help preserve it – and a large part of that is to reduce the traffic through it.”
As England’s only World Heritage City I believe all local residents have a duty to ensure we do what we can to help preserve it – and a large part of that is to reduce the traffic through it.”
Of course, transport is one of the powers the new ‘super mayor’ would have if our district councils sign-up to the Government’s plan for a Metropolitan area and -in doing so – agree to an elected mayor.
Road investments ‘beyond 2020’ will also be after the next General Election. Be interesting to see how things map out.
In the meantime – while all the attention is on vehicles – can we spare a thought for the dreadful state of our city’s roads.
Being brave enough to ditch the plans for a giant car park east of the city would free up funds to pay for major re-surfacing – which some sort of toll could help fund also.
The vehicles causing the damage should help pay for it to be repaired.