We need A40 interchanges urgently

First published in Letters

Sir – I was interested to read your report on March 26 about the proposed Shores Green junction in the A40; this was accompanied by a diagram of the resulting roads according to the local plan.

Whatever the merits of Shores Green (I suggested this to the council and wrote to this newspaper about 20 years ago on this theme), the map you printed was not correct, as the council has decided to add just a roundabout on the A40 at the junction with Downs Road and not an interchange.

Don’t the people of Witney deserve fully functional exits and entries to their town?

More traffic snarl-ups will ensue and deter businesses from locating to Witney. Where then will the people work who are going to move into all the new houses being built in Witney and the surrounding area?

The difference in cost between an interchange and a roundabout is, I am told, about £3m – in the greater scheme of things this is a drop in the ocean.

Are we going to be discussing this like Shores Green in another 20 years’ time?

I spend most of my days driving around the South East of England. It is only when I return to West Oxfordshire that I encounter traffic jams – even London’s traffic moves better than West Oxfordshire’s. I can only imagine that the people who pass planning applications never go outside Witney.

Reg Summers, Burwell Drive, Witney

Comments (2)

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8:15pm Wed 23 Apr 14

the wizard says...

Reg, the truth of the matter is Oxfordshire as a whole has always had an inherent bad record for roads and their upkeep. Very few new road schemes over the last 40 years or so and no proper widening of narrow roads has left the county with very few alternatives on any given route. Hudspeth and Mitchell before him have a frankly shocking attitude towards the rate paying, tax paying motorist.

The lack of action by Oxon CC over the years has been nothing short of utterly disgraceful and their record goes before them in as much the traffic jams are now a daily occurrence which must cost millions of pounds over any 12 months to trade industry and the private individual.
It really is time that wrists were bound to ankles so backsides can be thoroughly kicked . If these people were privately employed they would have been sacked for dereliction of duty and gross incompetence.
Reg, the truth of the matter is Oxfordshire as a whole has always had an inherent bad record for roads and their upkeep. Very few new road schemes over the last 40 years or so and no proper widening of narrow roads has left the county with very few alternatives on any given route. Hudspeth and Mitchell before him have a frankly shocking attitude towards the rate paying, tax paying motorist. The lack of action by Oxon CC over the years has been nothing short of utterly disgraceful and their record goes before them in as much the traffic jams are now a daily occurrence which must cost millions of pounds over any 12 months to trade industry and the private individual. It really is time that wrists were bound to ankles so backsides can be thoroughly kicked . If these people were privately employed they would have been sacked for dereliction of duty and gross incompetence. the wizard
  • Score: 3

6:41am Fri 25 Apr 14

nickwilcock says...

The Local Plan section concerning the Downs Road junction used to refer to either a 'grade separated' junction, meaning proper slip roads, or an 'at grade' junction, meaning a roundabout. This has changed in the latest draft as it now seems that the council and developers want the cheaper option of congesting the A40 through traffic with yet another roundabout.

Anyone using the A415/A420 roundabout at Kingston Bagpuize will know how difficult and dangerous this sort of junction is in the middle of a free-flowing dual carriageway. I would bet money on the next proposal being to reduce the only 70 mph section of road to 50 mph in the vicinity of this proposed roundabout.

When the much-delayed Draft Local Plan is released this summer, people should examine the Downs Road junction proposal carefully and OBJECT to any 'at grade' roundabout. Even the OCC representatives describing the new Station Lane/Ducklington Lane/Thorney Leys road scheme couldn't believe that their colleagues were proposing to inflict this daft roundabout scheme on an already congested A40!

We need the Shores Green Slip Roads now, then a proper gradient separated junction for Downs Road. Nothing less is acceptable. Don't forget to ask the views of your prospective local councillors when they are out and about before the forthcoming elections!
The Local Plan section concerning the Downs Road junction used to refer to either a 'grade separated' junction, meaning proper slip roads, or an 'at grade' junction, meaning a roundabout. This has changed in the latest draft as it now seems that the council and developers want the cheaper option of congesting the A40 through traffic with yet another roundabout. Anyone using the A415/A420 roundabout at Kingston Bagpuize will know how difficult and dangerous this sort of junction is in the middle of a free-flowing dual carriageway. I would bet money on the next proposal being to reduce the only 70 mph section of road to 50 mph in the vicinity of this proposed roundabout. When the much-delayed Draft Local Plan is released this summer, people should examine the Downs Road junction proposal carefully and OBJECT to any 'at grade' roundabout. Even the OCC representatives describing the new Station Lane/Ducklington Lane/Thorney Leys road scheme couldn't believe that their colleagues were proposing to inflict this daft roundabout scheme on an already congested A40! We need the Shores Green Slip Roads now, then a proper gradient separated junction for Downs Road. Nothing less is acceptable. Don't forget to ask the views of your prospective local councillors when they are out and about before the forthcoming elections! nickwilcock
  • Score: 3

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