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 17 July 2018
From A P Walgate

Representation

Need
It is very questionable whether there is a need for this facility adjacent to this section of the M1 Motorway. My understanding of the criteria for such developments is that they should be placed strategically around the country, not in close proximity to other RFTs. There is already a massive Rail Freight Interchange only 20 miles away on the M1 at DIRFT, which is currently being enlarged. So the need for this development in this location is not proven.

Traffic & road congestion
Junction 15 of the M1 is already heavily congested with regular periods on a daily basis when traffic is at a standstill. Even if this junction is re-designed it will still continue to create a bottleneck as the A45 and A508 are major through routes with high traffic flows. In addition the A508 south from this junction has already reached practical capacity during busy periods and any development that creates more traffic on this road will inevitably lead to more pollution and a significant increase in the use of the adjacent rural roads as 'rat runs'.
The large numbers of HGV movements associated with this development will be severely detrimental to traffic flows on the adjacent M1, A45 and A508. In addition as there is low unemployment in the surrounding areas the vast majority of employees will only add to the congestion, as they will be travelling long distances from outside the area, not only creating unnecessary air pollution but also putting added pressure on the rural road network. The villages of Blisworth & Roade already suffer from daily traffic congestion.

Air & Light Pollution
The site is at present mainly farmland with little visible lighting except that on the M1 Motorway. The glare from this development will be significant and would create an unnecessary intrusion into this rural locality.
The adjacent M1 corridor is already generating high levels of air pollution and to add another 16,000plus HGVs and around 5,000 cars daily to this would be detrimental and cause added health hazards to residents in the surrounding areas.

Employment
As already stated, there is a low level of unemployment in this part of Northamptonshire, therefore employees at this site would mostly be coming longer distances on already congested roads. Thereby increasing pollution and traffic problems. There is not a current need to generate significant employment opportunities in this area.

Planning precedence
Any development to the south of the M1 Motorway will be contrary to The South Northamptonshire Local Plan and should therefore be refused. It would also set a precedent for further development to the south of the motorway which would be unacceptable in local planning terms.