HS2 given March or­ders

Com­pany has to prove haul road is best op­tion for area

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Kather­ine Cle­men­tine kather­ine.cle­men­tine@trin­i­tymir­ror.com

HS2 Ltd have un­til March to prove that their traf­fic mit­i­ga­tion pro­pos­als, of a haul road through Uxbridge Golf Course, is the best op­tion for Hilling­don.

Hilling­don Coun­cil, MP Nick Hurd, as well as pe­ti­tion­ing res­i­dents, had their chance to speak at the HS2 Se­lect Com­mit­tee on Mon­day Jan­uary 25.

The com­mit­tee heard a counter pro­posal from res­i­dents of The Drive to change the lo­ca­tion of the haul road so that it

utilises a dis­used rail­way line in­stead of the golf course.

Cllr Ray Pud­di­foot, Ick­en­ham coun­cil­lor and Leader of Hilling­don Coun­cil, said: “What Hilling­don Coun­cil man­aged to get on the traf­fic point is for HS2 to look at it again and if we couldn’t come to an agree­ment then it would go to the Sec­re­tary of State for Trans­port to make a de­ci­sion.

“By the end of March they’ve got to come up with their defini­tive plan, with stud­ies, with the num­ber of ve­hi­cles that will go down the haul road and prov­ing that it will not cause grid­lock.

“They have to fac­tor in the con­trac­tor’s ve­hi­cles as well, not just the ones re­mov­ing the spoil. There’ll be a lot of peo­ple mov­ing in and out dur­ing the day and they need to fac­tor in those move­ments as well.”

HS2 Ltd was un­clear how many HGV move­ments there would be as it stated a fig­ure of 550 but added that this could ‘go up or down’.

The topic of com­pen­sa­tion for Uxbridge Golf Course, West Ruis­lip Golf Course, and the Hilling­don Out­door Ac­tiv­ity Cen­tre (HOAC) was also dis­cussed.

Mr Pud­di­foot added: “The fo­cus is nail­ing them down on the traf­fic sit­u­a­tion, that’s the im­por­tant thing.

“This is life threat­en­ing. It’s go­ing to cause havoc for or­di­nary peo­ple try­ing to get to work across the A40.

“If it was go­ing to cause a pile up on the A40, that’s the sort of dev­as­tat­ing as­pect you don’t want, so it is the traf­fic mit­i­ga­tion that is our pri­or­ity.”

The Con­ser­va­tive coun­cil leader is scep­ti­cal about the whole pro­ject go­ing ahead and hopes cen­tral govern­ment will ditch it.

He added: “It’s so poor a busi­ness case you couldn’t make it up. It’s abysmal.

“If you’ve got pots of money it’s fine, but when you haven’t got money for schools, roads, flood de­fences and new hospi­tals, why on earth we need to get to Birm­ing­ham 12 min­utes quicker beg­gar’s be­lief.”

Ruis­lip, North­wood and Pin­ner MP Nick Hurd pre­dicted the next six months ‘will be crit­i­cal’ in en­sur­ing mit­i­ga­tion for Hilling­don.

He said: “Over many years res­i­dents, MPs and the coun­cil have cam­paigned to­gether for Hilling­don to get proper pro­tec­tion from the ter­ri­ble im­pacts of HS2.

“Thanks to that work, I can now see a sce­nario where we will have achieved bet­ter com­pen­sa­tion; the sav­ing of HOAC; and a traf­fic so­lu­tion that we could live with through grit­ted teeth.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.