Demo over park and ride site plans
OBJECTORS to a park-and-ride scheme claim their village would be ruined if it is given the go-ahead.Protestors fighting the proposed location of the facility in Eight Ash Green demonstrated at the weekend to show planning chiefs their depth of feeling.
By Roddy Ashworth
OBJECTORS to a park-and-ride scheme claim their village would be ruined if it is given the go-ahead.
Protestors fighting the proposed location of the facility in Eight Ash Green demonstrated at the weekend to show planning chiefs their depth of feeling.
Essex County Council wants to build the park-and-ride in land on the north east side of Halstead Road in the village.
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The transport hub would provide parking for up to 1,000 cars whose drivers would then catch regular buses into Colchester, alleviating pressure on the growing town's already congested road system.
But local residents believe the traffic generated close to their properties will cause rush-hour chaos in the area and lead to light and noise pollution.
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On Saturday hundreds of local people, many with banners and placards, spent an hour walking around the field where transport bosses have applied for planning permission to build the facility.
Alan Chapman, of the Eight Ash Green Action Group, said: “Nobody is against the idea of a park-and-ride in principle - we think it would be good for Colchester. But this is the wrong place.
“There was a consultation which 460 people went to see, and 458 of them said they were worried about the traffic congestion it could create.
“There isn't the infrastructure that could take this without massive congestion. We feel our village is going to be ruined.”
Colchester Borough councillor for the area, Dennis Willets, said he could not understand why the proposed location had been switched from a site on the other side of the A12 in Stanway, which had originally been earmarked for the facility.
“I find the whole thing totally baffling. The earlier decisions all favoured Stanway.
“Eight Ash Green is not an ideal site. Nobody can explain to me why the preferred Stanway site was moved. It has caused an uproar in the village. I give the action group my full support.”
Essex County Council's cabinet member for transport, Rodney Bass, yesterday said: “I cannot comment on it. It is subject to a planning application following consultation and I really cannot say anything until the planning application has been determined.”