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Letter: Council Are Right To Be Planning Transport Strategically

Published on: 13 Apr, 2016
Updated on: 17 Apr, 2016

A traffic jam on the A3 by BurphamFrom Keith Reeves

In response to the following comment from Jim Allen on the article: Ambitious Borough Transport Strategy Allows for Major Growth

“Read this document very carefully and you find it contains anomalies like: a tunnel entrance underneath housing, one sided access to a box junction, lack of the word ‘integrated’ when talking of trains and buses and a new commuter estate for London workers.

“In short, a very disappointing and poorly thought through document.”

In fact, if you read the document very carefully you won’t find it contains a tunnel entrance under housing. An indicative line on a plan referring to an aspirational tunnel scheme shouldn’t be taken to be a suggested horizontal alignment with portal positions at the ends.

I’m pleased that the council is considering transport strategically, and I’m sure they’d be the first to acknowledge that it’s work in progress.

I wonder whether people would be equally disappointed if the council ignored the matter and weren’t discussing the issues with Government, SCC, the LEP, Highways England, Network Rail, Southwest Trains, GWR and the bus operators.

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Responses to Letter: Council Are Right To Be Planning Transport Strategically

  1. Jules Cranwell Reply

    April 13, 2016 at 8:14 pm

    The council is looking at this strategically so as to align with the strategic aspirations of voracious developers to concrete over the borough.

    • Keith Reeves Reply

      April 28, 2016 at 1:49 pm

      It’s great to be able to turn to The Dragon’s regular contributors for well considered input.

  2. Bernard Parke Reply

    April 14, 2016 at 9:07 am

    This year, next year, sometime, never.

    I tend to agree with Jules Cranwell’s comment over this.

  3. Jim Allen Reply

    April 15, 2016 at 12:26 pm

    Actually, if you know the landscape, you will see the logical ‘tunnel entrance’ is ‘into’ Gosden Hill to the Left of the A3 south bound, exactly where the Park & Ride and houses are planned to go.

    If the tunnel entrance is on flat Land further north then considerable landscape change/ removal would be required to get from 33 metres above sea level to under the river at 30 metres and then rise to 80 metres at Compton. As Gosden Hill is 40 metres above sea level, the amount of earth moving to generate the entrance would be considerable less.

    The tunnel entrance at any other location is questionable, so we have a local plan allocating housing on Gosden Hill and a transport plan allocating a tunnel.

    Furthermore, the proposal for southward on and off slip roads fails to take into account that West Clandon ‘on-slip’ is less than 2km from the new “off-slip” (at the weighbridge), meaning West Clandon would have to close if Highways England safety standards were applied.

    You will also find the “Box Canyon” of Gosden Hill would have no access north bound for the Park & Ride users and no access for A25 station users, as there is no link road to the A25.

    As for the failure to make buses meet trains, if Anchorage Alaska with one passenger train per week can have a bus stop outside why to the people of Guildford have to walk half a mile?

    I stick by my first assessment: a very poor document poorly thought through for the North of Guildford. It’s a shame they didn’t consult the community before preparing and publishing such a document.

    • Keith Reeves Reply

      April 28, 2016 at 1:44 pm

      I stick by my first comment, i.e. this document doesn’t postulate a tunnel portal location.

  4. Andrew Backhurst Reply

    April 19, 2016 at 9:26 pm

    I would be very surprised if this central Guildford tunnel is any more than a positioning statement to the highways authorities.

    Think of it, a 5-7km tunnel under Guildford with varying subsoils and bedrock to deal with as well as the River Wey. What government would ever sanction a current estimate of £1.5 billion to spend improving an ‘A’ road?

    A north and west A3 bypass will be the cheaper and more logical solution serving not only Guildford but Woking to the north and Aldershot and Farnham to the west, including the proposed enlarged villages of Ash, Tongham and Normandy.

    Adding to that the existing A3 would then be free for local traffic use. It appears to me that the gap on the map has been left in the Guildford plan for this scenario. This route would have a less than 1km of tunnel. I will not share my thoughts of where I think it will run, but a quick glance of a map and it becomes fairly clear.

    No doubt we will have all ground to a halt long before any road is ever built but whatever happens I personally don’t think we will ever have a road tunnel under central Guildford.

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