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End A40 gridlock - build us a new road from Longford to Gorsley

By The Citizen  |  Posted: January 24, 2014

  • Proposed route of the new A40

Comments (12)

PROPOSALS for a radical new road shelved 20 years ago should be reconsidered to try and solve one of the county's biggest traffic jams, a businessman believes.

Maisemore farmer Jeremy Chamberlayne wants highways officials to dust off the plans to route a new A40 from Longford to Gorsley.

They were ditched when the Government cut back on major roads schemes but Mr Chamberlayne believes the new road is needed now more than ever when traffic backs up on the A40 at the Northern Bypass, Highnam, Over and Churcham, on the B4215 Newent road and the A48 at Minsterworth.

Maisemore and Hartpury are cut off by floodwaters on the A417 most years, which adds to the congestion.

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"There is a need for it today because there is so much traffic," said Mr Chamberlayne. "Obviously it's going to cause a lot of objections but I believe it's second only to the Crickley Hill problems in terms of the traffic issues which face the county."

Gloucestershire County Council is calling on the Highways Agency to fund a new loop of the A417 around Nettleton Bottom to its list of major schemes.

That would cost £250 million and the council has launched a petition to gather support.

"When the A417 floods, traffic diverts to the Newent road and it can take anything up to two hours to get from Maisemore to Gloucester," said Mr Chamberlayne.

The proposal considered in the early 1990s ruled out widening the A40 between Highnam and Ross-on-Wye because of the hilly terrain, so mapped out a new road from the A40 Longford roundabout which would have run across the east channel of the River Severn to a junction south of Maisemore on the A417, across the west channel, before heading up towards Newent and Gorsley to junction three of the M50.

The proposed route would have run north of Rudford on a new road to a junction with the B4215 a few hundred yards south of the Hartpury junction at Highleadon.

The new road would have run on the south side of the B4215 until the Newent bypass/Newent town junction, where it would have followed the route of the bypass.

At the B4215/B4221 junction in Newent the new road would have been constructed in a near straight line to junction three of the M50.

The Highways Agency bought up property including the Travellers Rest pub in anticipation of the scheme.

Highnam parish and Tewkesbury Borough councillor Derek Davies said the scheme failed on cost grounds last time.

"I believe the A417 at Maisemore shouldn't be allowed to flood and that should be a priority," he said.

Gloucestershire County Council cabinet member for planning and infrastructure Will Windsor Clive said: "We are always interested to look at proposals which aim to keep the county moving.

"Sometimes the best ideas come from local people. At the moment our priority for Highways Agency funding is sorting out the A417 'missing link', but when that's completed, we'd be happy to look at ideas like this in more detail."

A Highways Agency spokeswoman said £28billion of investment in major roads is planned until 2021 and £50billion until 2029.

Some 52 major road schemes are programmed and 200 smaller "pinch point" schemes costing less than £10million, such as improvements at the Over roundabout, are scheduled.

The major schemes have been fed in to the agency's route-based strategy, on which local authorities can make a case for inclusion.

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  • Dave_t10  |  January 25 2014, 3:36PM

    A good idea but really needs to be a dual carriageway to minimise the delays currently caused by slow moving traffic on the roads.

  • Matt1006  |  January 24 2014, 3:36PM

    GlosAnarchy - yes, absolutely. J3 on the M50 at present is little more than a gap in the fence. Was deemed acceptable in 1960 when the M50 opened, but not now. Really needs rebuilding irrespective of any works to run a new A40 into it, but I suspect it won't ever happen.

    |   -17
  • GlosAnarchy  |  January 24 2014, 12:23PM

    BTW this proposal also requires a new junction with the M50 as the junction there at the moment is an accident just waiting to happen!

    |   -19
  • adrian2010  |  January 24 2014, 11:53AM

    another bridge over the severn into the south of the city please.

    |   4
  • Walker100e  |  January 24 2014, 11:36AM

    Randylearner thanks for your input. Clearly I misunderstood. There was me thinking that traffic had to be able to leave a roundabout in a timely fashion to enable further traffic to enter onto it.

    |   -17
  • GlosAnarchy  |  January 24 2014, 10:52AM

    The plan looks great on paper but aren't the first sections from Longford and past Maismore to be built on a flood plane. It will need to be raised to a sufficient level to avoid getting flooded and constructed not to impede the water flow. This brings a second problem, the high voltage cables may need to be raised to maintain statutory clearances and this cost would be paid for by the builders of the road! The Longford and Over roundabouts are the problems, the Over roundabout being the bigger problem of the two. In the evening the traffic backs up from Over to past the Longford roundabout, this also holds up traffic heading towards Kingsholm (stuck on northern bypass waiting to turn left towards Kingsholm) If an over pass was created at both roundabouts to take the A40 traffic across without having to slow down to a crawl in both directions and the section from the Longford roundabout to Over turned into a dual carriageway. Then get rid of that stupid hatching closing off an entire lane for one house. The flyover solution was the solution of the roundabout on the A4259 and A419 in Swindon, no traffic hold ups there anymore when you could often spend halve an hour stuck there! Aquilae – Yes the Gloucestershire crossing sounds good at the location you specified but that again will be crossing a large are of flood planes with NEW roads. A solution from the Lydney area combined with a railway crossing for the heritage railway at the old Severn Crossing site would be the most cost effective solution as the road could connect to B4066 and onto the A38 at a much lower cost there will still need to be a swing bridge like the one on the SW bypass at sharpness.

    |   -19
  • JemmyWood  |  January 24 2014, 10:31AM

    The NIMBY's will be out in droves over this despite the ACTUAL NEED for it and the benefits it would bring. But what is more important in a NIMBYs little mind, the greater good or the view from their window?

  • Aquilae  |  January 24 2014, 9:32AM

    I should have said an additional Severn crossing.

    |   2
  • randylearner  |  January 24 2014, 9:13AM

    The "pinch point" at Over roundabout is caused by the single carriageway viaduct leading to Longford Rubbish, that has no effect on the amount of traffic entering the over roundabout from Highnam

  • Aquilae  |  January 24 2014, 8:32AM

    A Severn crossing in the shire would be immensely beneficial.

    |   6