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Letter: If Our MP Is Serious About an A3 Tunnel There Are Other Factors to Consider

Published on: 17 Dec, 2022
Updated on: 17 Dec, 2022

Angela Richardson telling Parliament, during PMQs, that it is time to tunnel the A3 under Guildford.

From: Graham Hibbert

Former chairman of Guildford Residents Association

I congratulate our MP Angela Richardson on raising the subject of a tunnel solution to the problem of the A3 bisecting Guildford. Currently, it creates air and noise pollution.

I just hope that this is a genuine effort to find a solution and not just an attempt to win votes by going through the motions.

The A3 tries to be both a highway and a local road. This does not work, leading to accidents and tailbacks. It divides the University of Surrey’s main campus from the science park and makes access to the science park difficult, thus, I suspect, limiting its economic potential.

There are no simple solutions as a bypass to the east and the west has problems and an elevated six-lane road retains the pollution and local traffic issues.

A tunnel is the only remaining solution that I can see, as it was with the Hindhead section, and although it will be expensive, I was told by the previous GBC Tory administration that it had developed a business case to justify the cost.

If Ms Richardson is serious then development at Gosden Hill Farm needs to be rethought in order to facilitate a tunnel entrance.

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Responses to Letter: If Our MP Is Serious About an A3 Tunnel There Are Other Factors to Consider

  1. David Roberts Reply

    December 17, 2022 at 6:58 pm

    If, despite one or two other calls on the public purse at present, Highways England is able to budget £250 million, and likely to spend £500 million on a pointless upgrade of M25 Junction 10, then I suppose nothing is impossible.

    But to me the idea of a tunnel under Guildford is just another Tory boosterish fantasy, in the same league as Boris Airport or, locally, Cllr Bob Hughes’ ridiculous election pledge to move Send into the Surrey Hills AONB. A tunnel is completely unaffordable, costing several times as much as the Hindhead Tunnel which was built when the nation still had some money.

    Its promotion by Tory Cllr Matt Furniss, to whom we owe the London Road fiasco, is enough to show that the idea is no more than an empty PR stunt.

  2. Bibhas Neogi Reply

    December 18, 2022 at 12:21 pm

    The original scheme was to cross the Devils Punch Bowl with a viaduct. It would have cost about a quarter of the cost of the tunnel. One group in Hindhead agreed and the other group opposed it. Time just passed and the scheme was suspended. It was Mr and Mrs Bottomley (both MPs) who managed to persuade the government to fund the tunnel even though I believe it did not really make the business case.

    It is the same here with the A3 in a tunnel under Guildford.

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