Council calls meeting to minimise disruption when construction of Hitchin rail flyover begins

IN an attempt to minimise disruption construction traffic is likely to cause to Letchworth GC residents when the rail flyover is built at Hitchin, North Herts District Council (NHDC) has convened a special meeting. The planning control committee meeting

IN an attempt to minimise disruption construction traffic is likely to cause to Letchworth GC residents when the rail flyover is built at Hitchin, North Herts District Council (NHDC) has convened a special meeting.

The planning control committee meeting has been arranged for November 2 to agree the council's response to Network Rail's multi-million pound programme.

NHDC is a consultee on the Transport and Works Act application which will be determined by the Department for Transport.

Cllr Michael Paterson, chairman of NHDC's Letchworth area aommittee, said: "Everyone wants the new line, which is in the national interest and will improve rail journeys for North Herts residents.

"However, we must do our best through the consultation process to minimise the disruption that the construction traffic is likely to cause."

North East Herts MP Oliver Heald said this week he had been told by Network Rail that there would be an increase of 560 vehicles a day on Wilbury Hills Road during the busiest period of the works.

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"The number of HGVs using the road now is 160 per day and will rise to 400 per day," said Mr Heald, who says he was given the figures during a meeting with Simon Brookes and Martin Hartley of Network Rail in the summer.

"But there will be 100 more lorries in the morning peak period and 100 more in the afternoon peak period.

"That is an 11 per cent increase in all traffic during the morning and afternoon peaks. The rest of the increase from 400 to 560 extra vehicles is non HGVs.

"The extra 100 lorry movements in each of the daily peaks is the main concern."

Members of the public can also make representations directly to the Secretary of State for Transport and the closing date is November 11. The address is c/o TWA Orders Unit 9/09, Southside, 105 Victoria Street, London SW1E 6DT or email them at transportandworksact@dft.gsi.gov.uk

The council will include representations from members of the public for consideration at the meeting. NHDC is urging members of the public to submit their letters to the council's offices by Monday, October 19 at the latest.

The email address is planning.control@north-herts.gov.uk Copies of the report will be available on line or on application to the council after Friday, October 23.

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