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Action Group slam “bizarre” planning for Junction 7a of M11

Planning / Thu 9th Mar 2017 am31 08:35am

A JOINT-action group against the proposed Junction 7a of the M11 has slammed the planning mechanism for the new road.

Chairman Rob Groves said: JAG said: “In a bizarre “1984 scenario” Essex County Council is applying to itself for permission to be allowed to build a new junction on the M11 (J7a). Where is the safeguarding of the interests of residents? Where are the checks and balances?

Unique joint action by residents with both their Conservative and Labour Councillors is continuing to put the interests of residents first and to resist the disastrous plans of Essex County Council to construct a major new A road carrying motorway traffic through residential Harlow.

The proposal would feed a 70% increase in traffic through Old Harlow and onward into the centre of the town massively increasing congestion and pollution which, as recently reported nationally, causes untold damage to breathing, health and lives of our children.

Residents and councillors agree to the need for the junction but want to see the northern route built to take the traffic out of the town and protect living standards of residents.

The Joint Action Group appeals to residents to object by going to the ECC planning portal at planning.essex.gov.uk. The Planning Application number is CC/EPF/08/17. The can also write to or email the council. Details on the website.

“The Joint Action Group cites Highways England’s concerns about the safety of the new junction. In HE’s view the close spacing of two junctions (ie the existing J7 and the new J7a) could increase motorway accidents as more traffic weaves and changes lanes to exit.

Another concern is the fact that the proposed site takes up an area of Green Belt which ECC should be protecting rather than building on. The Green Belt is an important safeguard against loss of amenity through urban sprawl. How much regard will the planning side of ECC have for the Green Belt when judging its own application?

“As the Government has announced plans for a new garden city north of Harlow, the Joint Action Group believes the time has come for a rethink about how best to improve Harlow’s connections with the M11. This is a strategic link that affects not only Harlow but Sawbridgeworth and the whole London Cambridge corridor. Short term thinking is not good enough where major investments in the future are concerned”.

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