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The Stonehenge scheme undermines the UK’s commitment to address climate change and biodiversity loss

"Instead of tackling climate change and improving local services this classic view will be lost to future generations to save possibly 8 minutes journey time and cost us £2bn. Together we can do better than that."

Di Cross, Green Party candidate for Amesbury West

THE STONEHENGE EXPRESSWAY IS WRONG FOR AMESBURY

Wiltshire is blessed with a site as special as Stonehenge within its boundaries. It is a place of spirituality, contemplation and celebration. Not only is it a landscape of immense archaeological, historical and environmental importance, but also home to several valuable species of conservation concern, including the stone curlew and the great bustard.

We are part of this landscape and must strive to protect it. The tunnel, at around 3km long, is far too short to protect a site 5.4km wide. The Government’s own inquiry found the same thing and recommended against the scheme.

Is it worth the risk? 

The development will take AT LEAST five years to complete and probably many more, bringing heavy plant, noise, dust and construction traffic to the area, diverting traffic onto alternative local roads causing delays and traffic disruption.

In 2017, the capital cost of the scheme was given as £1.6 billion; this has already risen to £2 billion, plus annual tunnel maintenance costs of £7 million – money that could be spent on improving public transport, school building and the NHS.

Even in the most generous of economic appraisals, the scheme has been shown to have negative economic benefit. Congestion around the site and consequent ‘rat running’ have, understandably, caused concern in Amesbury West. However, any traffic flow improvement brought about by the scheme would be temporary, since road widening is known to induce more traffic and rarely brings hoped-for economic benefits.

The Green Party is committed to supporting efforts to overturn this decision and put protection of your outstanding landscape ahead of a road-building scheme that will cause you traffic chaos for years to come.

Note: The Stonehenge expressway is part of a much bigger plan totalling eight improvement schemes along the A303/A358/A30 corridor. At present, funding has been provided for just three of these schemes. Highways England has admitted that travel time benefits will not be achieved until all eight schemes have been completed.

The scheme’s benefits “would not outweigh the harm arising from the excavation of a deep, wide cutting and other engineering works, with the WHS and its setting, of a scale unseen in this unique ‘landscape without parallel’”.

Examining Authority for the Planning Inspectorate

The Green Party is committed to supporting efforts to overturn this decision and put protection of your outstanding landscape ahead of a road-building scheme that will cause you traffic chaos for years to come.

Note: The Stonehenge expressway is part of a much bigger plan totalling eight improvement schemes along the A303/A358/A30 corridor. At present, funding has been provided for just three of these schemes. Highways England has admitted that travel time benefits will not be achieved until all eight schemes have been completed.

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