Letter: Relief road - We should get on with it...

Traffic on Skipton Road, Harrogate. (2312033j)
Traffic on Skipton Road, Harrogate. (2312033j)

Regarding Geoff Foxall’s letter (Advertiser, April 13), it would be surprising for the Campaign to Protect Rural England to release a report endorsing the use of relief roads/bypasses.

The employed consultants analysed 13/86 road schemes (unclear) and appeared to conclude a clear majority were failures. They generated more traffic, did not reduce congestion, put pressure on adjoining roads, adversely affected landscape and had little beneficial effect on the economy.

To assess these factors accurately, before and after figures would be required for each parameter - a major and improbable exercise.

One must question the impartiality, thoroughness and expertise of the survey and report.

My engineering background tells me that in the face of increasing demand and congestion as Harrogate grows, (cycling, public transport and walking will not significantly reduce demand), increased capacity i.e. more roads are needed (trying to increase current road capacity using smart traffic lights and replanning junctions have spectacularly failed).

Providing NYCC’s traffic surveys and analyses have been done correctly and indicate a relief road/bypass will take a significant volume of traffic from existing congestion prone roads, we should get on with it.

I will say its location, access points and detailed planning are crucial to success, needing proven expertise (NYCC have not recently demonstrated obvious competence in this area so this must be a worry).

A half baked, ill thought through scheme would be a tragedy.

Paul Ashfield

Duchy Road,

Harrogate