East Of Bath Park & Ride - Decision On Site Selection
Wednesday, January 25, 2017 at 8:04PM
Geoff Ward in BANES, BBANES Planning Policy, Bath & North East Somerset Council, Bath City, East Bath Park & Ride, Green Belt

I recognise the leadership role you all have in growing our economy, creating jobs and providing sufficient housing. I also understand the need to tackle congestion, reduce pollution and enhance the quality of our city environment both for residents and visitors alike.

What I can't agree with is exporting Bath's traffic woes to Bathampton, Batheaston and Bathford. Your site selection is the most damaging and destructive way forward. It's got to be a serious misjudgement to despoil our Greenbelt and the World heritage setting for Bath. If this goes ahead you'll spoil the charm and quality of life for many residents and the wider Bath community, who value the rural character right on the outskirts of our city.

Image of Proposed Area of East of Bath Park & RideOur meadows are under considerably more threat now than at any time in the past. We have proposals for car parking, a freight terminal an A46-36 link. How much of our green open space will all this infrastructure need? I see the location of this Park and Ride right in the middle of the meadows as the first step to terminal urbanisation and its quite right that my community should make a stand, otherwise something so precious us all will be lost forever.

Image of Proposed Area of East of Bath Park & RideOn one fact I'll probably agree with you, I suspect this Park and Ride will be popular and busy, so popular that your initial 800 spaces will quickly by overwhelmed and you'll want to expand it to 1200 or perhaps 1400 space with consequential impact on air quality, on noise and especially light pollution, which will inevitable diminish the enjoyment of our meadows for many.

Image of Proposed Area of East of Bath Park & Ride

It's a mistake that you think these sites can be hidden away amongst trees and shrubbery. Many properties were built elevated on the slopes to take advantage of the wonderful view  and you will destroy that forever with the site selection you are about to make.   It's absolutely inconsistent that my local residents in the same location have their planning applications so often refused on the ground of "damaging the openness of the greenbelt" but in the case for a 1200 space car park it's all fine and dandy!

I hope you see tonight that you have a chance to pull back from this detrimental and damaging step. I hope you recognise it's in your gift tonight to ask Officers to look again at solving our increasing traffic challenge. You could ask them to think a bit more "outside of the box", support local buses, perhaps smaller parking areas and maximise the excess capacity in the other park and rides. You have an opportunity now to demonstrate you are the true custodians of the greenbelt, our world heritage setting and the quality of life for my residents and the wider Bath community.                

I call on you to reject the Officer report and recommendations, you have no choice in front of you, only "Hobson's choice". Thank you!

Article originally appeared on Geoff Ward (http://www.geoffward.net/).
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