Highways Agency Questions and Answers- June 2011

We asked some questions of the Highways Agency about the ‘trunked’ or ‘not trunked’ A49:

Q1: ‘We note you have some queries about Herefordshire Council’s Study of Options and their Sustainable Transport Options’ Evidence Base Documents that have informed their Core Strategy. Can you tell us, is the Highways Agency in negotiations with Herefordshire Council to detrunk the A49?

A1.: No, the Highways Agency is not in negotiations to detrunk the A49… If the intention is that the Highways Agency will be asked to trunk the relief road, a pre-requisite will be that any Departures from Standards will have to be identified and secured sufficiently early in the life of the project to be included in the design brief for the relief road.  We would wish to avoid being put in a situation where we are presented with a completed relief road that we are expected to trunk, that contains sub-standard features that we cannot accept.

Q2: Will you be adopting any new roads that pass through the housing estates that are required to fund this road, as the proposals show that the new road would be built through the centre of these developments, in order to release the maximum amount of land for house building?

A2: Please see the answer above. We have no plans to trunk any roads passing through new housing estates and any proposed trunking or detrunking would need to be agreed by Ministers.

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2 Responses to Highways Agency Questions and Answers- June 2011

  1. Steve says:

    If the housing distributor road (not a relief road given its lack of relief according to the Council’s own assessments) is not built to DfT standards and is not to be trunked then, presumably, the existing A49 through Hereford will remain a trunk road.

    It follows that strategic signage will continue to direct trunk road traffic via the existing A49.

    This calls into question any assumptions made in the Council’s transport studies about the likelihood of trunk road traffic transferring to the distributor road and thus further calls into question the extent to which the distributor road might relieve the A49 through Hereford.

  2. Steve says:

    Couple of things:-

    1. I see that the latest consultation documents show only a western bypass. But the decision to go for a western bypass was made only very recently when the council voted to ditch the poll. Doesn’t this suggest that the “west-is-best” option had been determined before the council meeting, in order that the consultation documents could be prepared in time for the latest consultation? Undemocratic?

    2. Now that the council are proposing fewer houses as part of the LDF, doesn’t that blow a further hole in the argument that the new housing will cover the road costs?

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