Think we are talking a load of old cobblers? Check these facts out and follow the links to independent research and reports.
First of all, read this report on Modern Transport Planning and then compare it with the drastically outdated Transport plan from Herefordshire Council (Yes! Their own report!) and ask yourself a few questions like:
How will a bypass alleviate congestion, when most traffic is going into the city to get to school and work?
How much would it cost to bring back free or affordable school buses?
Why is the council claiming such a good record on cycling when cycling in Hereford has declined by 65%?
Just how will business benefit from the Bypass being on the opposite side of town to the main industrial estate?
Just how will the county benefit from five times more traffic on the A49?
Now, why not have a gander at how Highways England is planning to concrete over the countryside instead of improving public transport and data connections that would help us share lifts and work closer to home. Then look at this crucial report on the impact of road building.
Would it surprise you to learn the Councils main infrastructure consultant Balfour Beatty owned Parsons Brinkerhoff when it was awarded the job to review the 2010 Amey report on the Hereford Relief Road Options in 2011. Balfour Beatty bought it in 2009 and sold it in 2014 which raises questions about the independence of this report.
Here are the supposedly independent reports that justify the Bypass: The 2011 Parsons Brinkerhoff Review of the Hereford Relief Road Technical Studies, and here is the Transport Strategic Phasing Study 2014. You will find that it is not clear cut and many additional recommendations are made for a comprehensive analysis of options.
And finally, here is the report on the Council's final announcement of the Red Route for the Bypass, and their justification for not allowing the public to digest, challenge or have their decision properly scrutinised, even by their own scrutiny committee!
The traffic data modelling does not include county wide traffic or any projection of traffic when motorway or A465 road to Abergevenny is complete in 2020. Nor does it allow for any normal human behaviours, such as taking shorter routes through the city, or travelling by car because public transport is inadequate or expensive.
The air pollution analysis in both is completely inadequate, taking no account of prevailing winds or HGV fumes, etc....
Neither report is independent and there are many, many issues that show these reports to be biased and not in the interests of the people of Hereford or Herefordshire.
When you've read the council's misleading brochures, have a look at these links for a bit more background:
Here is the full application made by Herefordshire Council to fund its transport plans.
Here is Breinton Parish Council's very well researched and comprehensive responsive to the 2017 consultation on the Bypass.
Here is a quick, affordable, modern viable solution that could be implemented almost immediately and would put Hereford on the map for futuristic transport, good health and a really bright future.
Their latest report on options for the South Wye Transport Package Options (updated 2017 and doesn't seem to be in the puiblic domain - We have a copy and are happy to share on request). It is notable that this report relies on the last report published in 2001!
Note: No plans to increase buses for those commuting from rural villages to school or work, and no plans to improve train services. Also, they specifically propose increasing housing and industry to improve economics in the low income/employment area near the Hereford Enterprise Zone, but are actually planning it on the other side of the city.
Herefordshire Council's scandalous plans for over-development of unaffordable housing and building on floodplains:
Herefordshire Council is planning to build 16,500 new houses by 2031. The expected sites for almost a third of these new houses were published on August 2017:
1,500 Leominster Southern Expansion
1,000 Lower Bullingham South of Hereford
1,000 Three Elms around Huntington Conservation area
800 City link road
625 Ledbury Viaduct
235 Holmer Road
Not mentioned here is the plan to build on the Three Elms Flood Plain. A lot of people are very unhappy about this. You can see 123 substantial objections on the Herefordshire Council's website. (Click the Representations button). Good summaries of why this house and industrial development is such a bad idea can be found in letters from the Huntington Hamlet Association, Breinton Parish Council, and Historic England.
Many National and Local Groups, Local Political organisations all have much more to say on this. Here's a list of their websites for more information and solutions.
Our Local Interests are well represented in the press by Hereford Times and at the Parish level were infrastructure proposals were recently rejected on logical and scientific grounds.
Herefordshire Council isn't the only council proposing and building unnecessary houses with dreadful transport links. Click here to find out just how endemic this problem is in the UK.
Ecology of the Bypass Route
Within Wye Ruin It? and our partner anti-bypass groups we are very concerned about all manner of wildlife along the route. Our lead researcher, Dr Nichola Geeson has produced a report specifically relating to the riverbank habitats by the River Wye SAC, and has many photos of wildlife along the route which have been taken over the past few years.
Believe it or not, even the worms are really important around here! The Red Route cuts through Grade 1 and Grade 2 agricultural land that is nationally rare and should be kept for growing food (especially in these times of BREXIT and climate change).
There's loads more info on this stuff. Let us know if you find something that helps get people in the know!