Homes England Planning Application: Topic to consider – Travel & Congestion

Paragraph 103 of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) states:

Significant development should be focused on locations which are or can be made sustainable, through limiting the need to travel and offering a genuine choice of transport modes”.

That choice for Chalgrove, according to Homes England, will be up to 4 buses an hour in to Oxford from the new development (not from Watlington) and possibly another service in the future to Didcot. It is unclear how this will be funded in the future and as we have already experienced, the levels of bus service can quickly decline. This will therefore be a car-based settlement. Where will all these cars go?

Homes England say they will upgrade Hollandtide Lane due to the increase in traffic but no mitigation is planned for Berrick Road or Mill Lane. The bypass will be rerouted through the new town and slowed to 20 miles per hour. Along with the new 4 storey blocks of flats planned for the town centre, how will air quality be affected?

With a new school here instead of Watlington how will pupils get to school? Buses or cars at school times will also contribute to the congestion. It is likely that our High Street will become a rat run. The main approaches to this new town will continue to be along a single road, the B480. Planned bypasses for Stadhampton and Cuxham, even if they get built, will just mean traffic can get here quicker, where do you think the problems will then occur?

The new 20 mph zone main street will be expected to take all traffic, cars, buses, HGV’s and agricultural. Can you think of any comparable sized town (this will become 4,500 homes) that has one road in and out? Is this the right place for this scale of development and does it warrant all this road building to try to make it work?