Letters: New homes development does not justify these traffic lights

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Messrs, Tanner and Cosham (letters, last two weeks) are in agreement that the facts about the proposed traffic lights scheme on Godsey Lane, Market Deeping are not widely known.

Would it not seem reasonable for such a potentially controversial and expensive scheme (£900,000) to have been explained clearly to local residents by the county council? Why would it be kept under the radar as appears to have been the case?

One reason perhaps for not publicising it to those who may be impacted is that they may not have agreed on its merits? My petition so far seems to support that conclusion.

The facts are there if you search hard enough.

Coun Cosham is correct in that it is complex, which is why four transport assessments have been commissioned over the past seven years (I wonder how much they cost?).

The hidden truth within these assessments is that the housing development, in three phases totalling 300 homes absolutely does not justify the traffic signals.

This is stated clearly in the first two transport assessments (2005 and 2007) but although the later assessments “bring together all previous reports” they seem to have chosen to omit conclusions from within those earlier reports, such as “even though the requirement for a signalised junction is demonstrably unnecessary 
on capacity and safety grounds”.

It seems the county 
council has a hidden agenda. It has an aspiration to build a link road between Godsey Lane and the A16 bypass through this estate, even though there “are no policy requirements for a link road.”

This is the only reason it wants the traffic lights, for some possible future Link Road, which may never be built and the need for which has not been demonstrated. I wonder how many 
local people were aware of that? Could the county council at least be honest and make it publicly known that this is its intention instead of hiding it behind the cover of the housing development, which in itself did raise local objections on various issues including traffic?

I will ask at the meeting they have agreed to attend on Monday.

Andy Pelling,

Deeping St James parish 
councillor, Kesteven Close, Deeping St James

I respond in a personal capacity to recent letters about the proposed traffic lights on Godsey Lane.

The town council and I have argued repeatedly that the Persimmon development needs an alternative 
vehicular access on to Towngate East. Unfortunately the county council highways department has argued this is unnecessary and, as usual, the district planners have kowtowed to them.

Instead we will see cars from 300 homes all spill out on to Godsey Lane among the existing traffic bound for the health centre, supermarket and two schools in the immediate vicinity.

The county council wants traffic lights now because it expects many, many more homes to be built in that corner of Market Deeping in the 
not-too-distant future.

It is afraid that if it doesn’t get the £900,000 investment from the developer now then ratepayers might have to cough up later. If the proposed lights are installed this year they will cause delay and congestion, and neighbouring residential roads will become rat runs for frustrated drivers.

For several years I have argued for more pedestrian crossings in Godsey Lane 
near the Health Centre and also near the Rainbow shopping precincts. Some-times pedestrians wait several minutes for a gap in the 
traffic. As a parent I would feel much happier about my children popping to the shops if Godsey Lane was safer to cross.

The county council has always ruled them out on financial grounds saying pelican crossings cost upwards of £15,000 while cheaper zebra crossings are no longer deemed safe.

This is typical of the attitude of the Conservative-run county and district councils’ approach to planning. They plan for roads and not people. They plan for cars and not pedestrians, cyclists or buses.

They are seduced and intimidated by the power and money of the developers and ignorant of the needs and opinions of the people who have to suffer the consequences of their half-baked decisions.

Hopefully, the impending elections in May will help to focus the county council’s attention for a few crucial weeks on the needs of the people it is supposed to be serving.

Ashley Baxter

Kesteven Close, 
Deeping St James