Link road for 9,000-home garden town to cause 'unacceptable problems'

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A proposed new link from Colchester to a garden suburb is causing major concerns for villagers living near the route - Credit: Jamie Niblock

Residents say they will be forced to “suffer air, noise and light pollution and a loss of privacy” if a new link road is built for a 9,000-home garden town.

The new A133/A120 link road, along with a Rapid Transport System (RTS) to the east of Colchester, is being funded with £99million of Government money secured by the county council - and is set to get the go-ahead on November 1

The proposed route will leave the A133 via a roundabout east of the University of Essex, cutting across 2.4km of open arable farmland before joining the A120 via a junction east of Bromley Road.

Essex County Council’s development and regulation committee will decide the link road, as well as new access routes to Ardleigh South Services and Colchester waste transfer station, and three new roundabouts.

Elmstead Parish Council says the link road will have a “detrimental impact on their health and wellbeing” of residents.

The parish council said: ”They will have to wait 15 years in order to gain any protection from planting mitigation as mature hedging and tree are being replaced with saplings.

“It is unacceptable that any residents should suffer financially, mentally and physically in this way.”

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The RTS will see investment in public transport in Colchester, linking key destinations across the town through the creation of a transit corridor.

It is anticipated to offer fast and regular services from the Park and Ride on the A12, through the town to the new garden community and ultimately a transport hub located off the new link road.

The parish parish council said: “This will result in more traffic going through the village of Elmstead which is not acceptable.

“Elmstead does not have the capacity to accommodate more traffic than it already does as the village sits on both sides of the A133 without controlled crossings and junction changes to enable both sides of the village to be accessed easily.

“When residents live in the garden community there will be an increase in the volume of traffic on local roads as the infrastructure of schools, healthcare, shops etc will not be in place – there has to be a trigger of 4,500 homes to build a school and health services so potentially this could be year 18 of a 30 year build.

“Residents are going to be forced to suffer air, noise and light pollution and a loss of privacy as a result of the construction and operation of this rising road."

The county council says that the adverse effects to the landscape and proposed removal of ancient woodland is “unfortunate”, but the benefits of the scheme “outweigh the harm”.