Town hopes new Melton transport impact study will lead to solutions

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The findings of a new study, confirming the traffic jam misery being suffered in the heart of Melton, will be used to inform decisions on future planning applications in and around the town.

One of the key aims of the Melton Mowbray Cumulative Development Transport Impact Study was to assess the impact, without mitigation, that six potential future housing developments (three major sites to the north and three to the south) would have on the town’s traffic volume and journey/delay times on main routes and at main junctions.

Although the study effectively only confirms what Melton motorists would say they’ve known for years - that the town’s roads already can’t cope with the level of traffic, let alone more in the future - it’s hoped the model will now lead to further studies which consider solutions and mitigation options.

The study will also form part of the evidence base to assist in the development of the emerging Melton Local Plan - which will help decide where at least 5,000 new houses will be built over the next 25 years as well as other development.

The report, which was discussed at a recent full Melton Council meeting, concludes: “The analysis suggests any development would have a notable impact in further deteriorating traffic conditions in the town. As a result, any development coming forward in the town - irrespective of size - requires a detailed transport assessment undertaken to ensure that suitable mitigation is proposed. This mitigation needs to be of demonstrably sufficient magnitude to not only mitigate the impacts of the development itself, but also contribute to a wider benefit for residents and as part of the overall growth strategy for the town. If this isn’t achieved, then the evidence within this document shows that the development cannot be considered sustainable.”

Independent borough councillor Mark Twittey welcomed the report at the recent council meeting but added: “I hope we can really start to make some progress on transport infrastructure in the town. We now need to look at more solutions, including a bypass. I’d really like to see some movement on this, it’s a problem which has been going on for decades an decades.”

l What solutions would you like to see to ease Melton’s traffic problems, both now and in the future? Email your views to our editor, Paul Richardson, at paul.richardson1@jpress.co.uk