Sir: Colin Read's letter (11 January) implies that the "noise pollution and disruption", which he rightly observes is caused by the traffic on the A34 through Newbury, might somehow be relieved by building the proposed bypass. This is surprising in view of the widely known fact that the vast majority of that traffic is local and would not be displaced by the bypass. The bypass could only serve to remove a fraction of the current traffic while generating yet more traffic growth, thus worsening the situation.
The Government has soldiered on with its flawed scheme seemingly oblivious to this knowledge, peddling the justification that the bypass was approved subject to democratic processes. The terms of reference of both public inquiries confined debate to a narrow range of options, primarily the route the bypass should take, so the question of whether a new road was actually needed, and what the alternatives to it might be, was never addressed.
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