Another bridge is not solution to traffic issues
✒ I BELIEVE it is wrong to advise that new bridges across the estuary are the solution to the traffic problems in West Gloucestershire.
Lydney and Blakeney are relatively small communities, with poor road connections to the north.
They do have access to M4 and, with the New A40, would have easy access to Gloucester, with half the traffic removed from Over Bridge.
The right answer is the one that was fully planned, with land purchased, nearly 30 years ago - the New A40, which was to connect the A40, at Longford, with the M50, at Gorsley, thus removing a large part of the load from Over roundabout, which currently handles all Gloucester and Cheltenham bound traffic from the sector between Chepstow, Ross, Hereford, Newent, Ledbury and all roads West of the river at Tewkesbury.
Even more heavy traffic, from Oxford to Hereford will come this way, when the A417, Crickley Hill improvement is completed.
It is quite likely that the 40 year old Over Bridge, standing on soft foundations, could suffer breakdown, as could the A417 Maisemore Road, developed from a toll road, with little engineering, apart from raising it to a level that actually impedes flood flow.
It runs very close to a deep ditch and that side of it is already more than 200mm. lower than the other.
So, that could subside, at any time Hartpury and Highleadon better watch out.
If the new A40 were to be chosen, it would be good to make the decision soon, before Maisemore expands into its only possible route.