A DECISION by Council chiefs to stump up £100,000 for a traffic study of Evesham is ‘the news people have been waiting for,’ a leading councillor has said.
The news was announced in Worcestershire County Council’s 2016/17 budget today (Friday) and now a professional traffic modelling firm will be brought in to assess the amount of traffic and highlight any issues with Evesham’s road network.
As well as reviewing current traffic levels, the assessment will also look at the impact of future housing developments and project traffic levels for the next 15 to 20 years.
Coun Gerry O’Donnell, who played a vital role in putting together the Town Plan, which argued for the need for a traffic study as one of its key priorities, said he’s ‘delighted’ with the announcement and urged council chiefs to get on with the study as soon as possible.
“I’m delighted to see the County Council has acknowledged the need recognised in the Town Plan,” Coun O’Donnell said.
“The people of Evesham have been waiting for this news.
“I hope the County Council will now get on assessing the town’s roads and the implications of extra housing.”
Coun John Smith, Cabinet member with Responsibility for Highways, told the Observer its ‘excellent’ news and claimed he had to argue with his Cabinet colleagues to get the cash for the project.
“It’s excellent news, it really is, obviously we’ve got to start and get a model together and then we will get a company to do the survey, which is urgently needed and we will wait and see what comes out of that,” Coun Smith said.
The county’s chief in charge of highways also said he hopes the traffic study will improve the town’s congested roads in the future.
“We certainly hope so. It will be a professional company that looks at it. It’s not just about the traffic that’s there now, it’s what is going to happen with future development in the area,” he added.
“It’s probably going to look at traffic for the next 15 to 20 years because it’s no good doing something today when X number or Y number of additional vehicles may be on the highway.
“It will look at all the journeys, why people make the journeys and the amount of traffic.
“It’s something I’ve had to argue for with my colleagues in the Cabinet through the budget process.”