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 10 July 2018
From Graham Meller

Representation

I object very strongly to this application.
There are many reasons for objection, but perhaps the most important for my family is the level and type of traffic that this proposal would generate. The projected increase is bad enough, and too much for this little back-road to support, but the worst problems would arise during rush-hours and when there is congestion on the M1 between junctions 8 & 15. Drivers then pour off the motorway and clog up the A5 and A508 - queues at the Stony Stratford roundabout are already ridiculous, but this proposal, in conjunction with the enormous number of new homes being built opposite Towcester Racecourse, will result in traffic chaos with even more people using the Shutlanger road as a rat-run.
The Shutlanger road is already unable to safely accommodate current traffic - buses, coaches, lorries and tractors have to stop when a vehicle approaches from the other direction. Or they mount the pavement (where there is one) or they churn up the turf outside my house. So the local environment is damaged and further idling of large vehicles damages air quality. This road is completely incapable of accommodating any extra traffic, let alone freight.
The road to Shutlanger from the west is long, narrow and straight but thankfully there is now a chicane outside the Plough to discourage speedsters. However, this results in queues of idling vehicles, which causes a build-up of particulates and nitrogen dioxide. This proposal would result in a dramatic increase in queues of idling vehicles and result in a dangerous increase in air pollutants. However, I have seen no evidence of background monitoring for PM2.5, PM10 or nitrogen dioxide in any of the affected villages. If the applicants wish to rely on air quality modelling, they might make a note of Defra’s recent damning experience in the High Court when they did so.
The roads around Blisworth, Stoke Bruerne and Shutlanger are already dangerously crumbling away and pot-holed, particularly at the edges, and this proposal would make the situation even worse. The state of these roads means that a fatal accident is almost inevitable and this proposal would incur even more damage to these narrow, dangerous roads.
Finally, I should say that I am generally in favour of proposals that create jobs and benefit the environment without harming the character of the local area. For this reason, this proposal must not be allowed to proceed because it would cause irreparable damage to a number of quiet country villages. These villages epitomise the English countryside and must not be sacrificed on the altar of 'same-day delivery.'
PS. we discovered this application when we received notification from a local group against the application - why did the applicants or the Council not write to us?