Eastern Link Road Back on the Agenda
On the 24 June the Herefordshire Council Cabinet agreed to progress the new Hereford
Transport Strategy with an allocated £1.24 million one off revenue fund for 2021/22.
The Hereford Transport Strategy Review (HTSR) was commissioned February 2020 to assess the
best options to provide modern transport system for the city which would address the declared
climate emergency, support the local economy, protect the environment and generate wider
society benefits. But does it?
£540k is allocated to develop safer routes to school, a cycling and walking master plan and
publicity to encourage more people to use alternatives means of travel to the car. But then
comes the rub. Also allocated is £400k to progress an eastern road link and river crossing.
Where this is in line with addressing the climate emergency and persuading people not to use
the car is unclear.
The eastern link road and bridge has been included in the Strategy on the spurious grounds that
another bridge crossing was essential to provide an alternative route for vehicular traffic and
would address resilience risk associated with the single A49 river crossing in the city. The road
and bridge will connect the A438 Ledbury Road and the B4224 Hampton Bishop Road with the
existing Rotherwas Link Road to the A49T south at Belmont. In addition the Strategy contains a
proposal to widen the railway bridge and remove the traffic signals on the A4103 Roman Road.
With this upgrade of the Roman Road from the A465 to the A49T north, it is easy to see that a
future link from the A438 to the A465 will complete an eastern relief road (aka bypass).
The implications are far reaching, especially in terms of the increased traffic effects on the
Tupsley residential area. The road and bridge will undoubtedly attract considerable volumes of
traffic wishing to avoid the existing A49T Greyfriars bridge and seek access to the college
complex, hospital and town centre. In effect it will be switching traffic congestion from one
corridor of the city to another.
The hope that people will be encouraged by the new Hereford Transport Strategy to use
alternative means of travel to the car and address the climate change issue is already showing
signs of fading.