Haverhill A1307 road campaign hits out at study’s ‘lack of understanding’
Suffolk business chiefs have hit out at a report which suggests the business case for a rail or a dual carriageway link between Haverhill and Cambridge offers “poor value for money”.
Failure to deal with the “dire need” to invest in the A1307 will hit the local and regional economy, they warn.
Haverhill Chamber of Commerce is set to host a meeting this week in the town to discuss the controversial draft concepts report published by the Greater Cambridge City Deal on the key route.
“It is clear to local businesses big and small that the limited improvements being recommended by the Greater Cambridge City Deal are not acceptable and show a lack of understanding of the dire need to address the A1307,” said Haverhill Chamber chair Paul Donno.
“Unless a commitment to make real investment is made then the local and regional economy will suffer.”
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Haverhill Chamber launched a campaign to dual the A1307 in October last year, and since then, business leaders have been lobbying hard locally and nationally.
Suffolk Chamber chair Sarah Howard said the road suffered “severe” congestion at peak times and had “greatimportance to future economic growth”.
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But Cambridge City Council Leader Lewis Herbert, who is chair of the Greater Cambridge City Deal, said the City Deal money was not for major road schemes but to make transport improvements in and close to Cambridge. They had prioritised the A1307 in the first tranche of the deal, he added.
“ I have met with representatives from Haverhill business community and would be happy to join with them in lobbying transport ministers for money needed to improve the A1307,” he said.
“That (City Deal) money has to be spread across a number of other vital and high priority projects or risk losing any further funding.
“We have absolute sympathy with Haverhill businesses and indeed with others that surround Cambridgeshire. But we need to be realistic that City Deal can’t solve every transport issue in the region.”