Great Barton: Long-awaited bypass may not come until 2031
16:16 03 July 2014
The long-awaited Great Barton bypass has not been identified as a deliverable project before 2031, it has emerged.
St Edmundsbury Borough Council discussed the traffic implications of developer Berkeley’s plans for about 1,250 homes north-east of Bury St Edmunds at a meeting on Monday.
Increased traffic on the local roads network as a result of the development, which would be close to the village of Great Barton and hamlet of Cattishall, has been a key concern amongst people in the area.
A late paper circulated at Monday’s meeting in relation to Berkeley’s draft masterplan said: “In respect of facilitating the provision of an A143 Great Barton bypass, the masterplan would not prevent a bypass coming forward should it become deliverable in the future.
“Although the Suffolk Local Transport Plan identifies a bypass for Great Barton as a ‘long-term aspiration,’ it is not in the county council’s programme or identified as a deliverable project before 2031.”
Councillor Diane Hind said she was “horrified” when she saw the late paper.
She added: “It does actually more or less give the information here there will not be a bypass before 2031”.
“I think there’s potential for real chaos around the town and I just want to know: what we are going to do about it?”
The north-east Bury development is one of five strategic sites around the town earmarked for housing.
Councillor Trevor Beckwith said something needed to be done urgently.
“We are heading for a big disaster if we don’t get this sorted out,” he warned.
Councillor Sara Mildmay-White, who was asked by residents to represent them during consultation on the development, said on the whole comments about the scheme had been “mostly fairly positive,” but transport was a big issue.
“It may be by 2031 we have to revisit how we all actually have to travel,” she said.
“Building another road there is actually looking backwards.”
Councillor Terry Clements, cabinet member for planning and regulation, said he had raised with Suffolk County Council the importance of a transport plan.
He added: “Developers can only be asked to provide infrastructure that are required to overcome detrimental impacts arising from their development.”
A borough council spokesman confirmed the county council had determined the developer did not need to provide a Great Barton relief road at this stage.
Councillors adopted the masterplan, with the amendment that it is brought back to the sustainable development panel to look at transport before it gets to the planning committee stage.