Northampton Gateway Rail Freight Interchange

The views expressed in this page do not represent those of the Planning Inspectorate. This page consists of content submitted to the Planning Inspectorate by the public and other interested parties, giving their views of this proposal.

Northampton Gateway Rail Freight Interchange

Received 06 July 2018
From James Alistair Robertson Muir

Representation

I strongly object to this proposal. We live in very close proximity to the site and however much the developers claim they will mitigate noise and light emissions, our life will be unacceptably disrupted by the site, rail, and road movements on a 24 hour basis. Pollution from the site will add to the current levels arising from the nearby M1. Since moving here 31 years ago, we have seen motorway traffic increase enormously which we must accept. We do not accept, however, an opportunistic speculative development on valuable agricultural land when the existing DRIFT site, approved by planning authorities and adopted by the West Northants Joint Core Strategy (WNJCS), already has planning permission for logistics space and a rail terminal. I understand a third phase of development was approved giving DIRFT sufficient capacity through until 2031. Therefore there can be no justification for this current proposal, particularly as the Planning Inspectorate appointed an independent planning inspector to review the WNJCS document who concluded that another SRFI site in the countryside in this area was unnecessary.
As a retired business CEO, I have seen many instances where several developers all propose similar expansion projects claiming to wish to fulfil the same hypothetical growth. This proposal seems to be exactly of this type, as it flies in the face of established approved sites and as such is likely to result in a sterilisation of valuable farmland for decades to come. If the developers are forced to encourage logistics businesses to use the site, I believe that noise and light pollution will be sacrificed in the drive to generate traffic.
With experience of other past planning proposals, I know that road traffic from the proposed site will not adhere to prescribed routes and inevitably more HGV traffic will use the local minor roads around the site. Stopping such abuse is unenforceable. We already have HGVs who ignore warning signs on Collingtree Road, drive through narrow village roads, and reverse up to half a mile because they find they cannot pass below the existing railway bridge. More will seek short cuts through the three villages to get access to the proposed site. Moreover, any road improvements around the proposed site would be spurious. The congestion will simply move slightly further afield as the A508 is a single carriageway road currently heavily used and the A43 dual carriageway was at its projected capacity the day it opened.
I strongly object to this proposal as it is unnecessary, unwelcome to the planning authorities and would be highly detrimental to the local area and its inhabitants.