A lane argument

SIR – Damion Roberts article on the possible addition of a third lane to relieve the notorious Welwyn - Stevenage bottleneck is an example of the negative thinking that is causing the clogging of Britain s roads. Britain is a modern, developing country b

SIR - Damion Roberts' article on the possible addition of a third lane to relieve the notorious Welwyn - Stevenage bottleneck is an example of the negative thinking that is causing the clogging of Britain's roads.

Britain is a modern, developing country but there has been virtually no road construction for 20 years, in spite of a tax on road users now reaching £40 million per year, and the rail network contracted drastically in 1963.

He has obviously accepted the current received wisdom that you cannot and should not try to build your way out of traffic congestion. This is untrue. If we limited the massive uncontrolled and destabilising increase in our population which unchecked immigration is causing, our traffic volumes would in the future scarcely increase. Almost everyone who wants one already has a car, and the rail network should be used to take a greater proportion of freight, instead of lorries. The road network could be improved by adding lanes to selected roads, as Mr Heald has proposed, without significant use of green space.

The question of the reality of the effect of carbon dioxide on climate change has been seriously challenged by many climatologists, as reported in television documentaries and recently at a major conference in New York. It is not the open and shut case which the environmental lobby would have us believe.


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It is wrong to advocate a ban on road improvement. The only result would be to cripple Britain economically for no environmental benefit.

A and B E BENNETT

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The Hollies

Shefford

SIR - I could not disagree more with Damion's point of view over the widening of the A1(M). An extra lane does not mean that other motorists would suddenly appear to fill it, it just allows the motorists already there to spread out and speed up the flow of traffic, which in turn will actually reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

I am sure that most people would love to leave their cars at home and use public transport, especially with the cost of fuel, but unfortunately our public transport system is pathetically inadequate. I for one would welcome the extra lane.

Mr A RYALL

By email

SIR - I really do not know why the motorist is always described as the enemy of the environment.

For you to describe Oliver Heald's decision to write to the Secretary of State of transport for widening the A1(M) between Stevenage and Welwyn Garden City as disappointing, is to say the least misguided and itself disappointing. Let me first assure you that nobody sits in the traffic on the A1(M) for the fun of it, mostly when it is jam packed. It is just hard-working tax-paying people trying to get to work.

For a lot of people public transport is not possible. The system is not integrated and to be honest not always reliable. I know that this government thinks we all live in Coronation Street and work in either the factory, Dev's shop or the Rovers Return but in this day and age we all travel to work and by using public transport it would add about two hours each way to our days. And in this lawless Britain that we live in now I am not sure it is even safe to walk the streets. The A1(M) is outdated. It was never designed for this amount of traffic so widening it would only be bringing it up to date and it would also keep traffic moving so this would in fact lower carbon dioxide emissions.

I do agree that we must all think before we use our cars but let's not forget how efficient cars are today compared to 25 years ago, and there is so much that we can all do to save this planet but do not target hard-working people.

MARK ROWE

Drakes Drive

Stevenage

SIR - Damion Roberts is quite wrong.

Widening the two lane A1(M) between junctions six and eight would remove an unnecessary bottleneck between two sections of three lane motorway and is definitely in the best interests of residents and businesses in Stevenage and North Hertfordshire. There would, of course, be more traffic on the improved facility but much of this would be traffic that is currently using neighbouring country roads as rat runs to avoid the motorway jams.

Lord COBBOLD

Park Gate House

Knebworth

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