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Opinion : Is it the right time to resume improvement work on the A40 in High Wycombe?

| July 16, 2020

The Micklefield Road junction on the A40, London Road in High Wycombe. (Archive picture)

You may well be aware of the multi phase improvement project on the A40, London Road in High Wycombe.

The work is part of a £6.6m scheme aiming to improve six major junctions along the London Road corridor from Easton Street to Loudwater.

You may also have seen the article that appeared in the news section of this site recently headlined ‘A40 London Road improvement work in High Wycombe enters a new phase on Monday 20th July 2020‘.

With the coming of the global pandemic the roads are much quieter at the moment and the prospect of a humdinger of a recession is looming large on the horizon.

As a result traffic on the roads is much lower than in recent years and the possibility of a recession means that it’s possible traffic levels may not recover to the previous levels for quite some time.

My good self is therefore wondering why the road needs ‘improving’? After all with less traffic there are likely to be fewer traffic jams.

Surely this improvement scheme is just the sort of project that needs to be shelved to save money? After all with so many billions of pounds spent nationally propping up jobs through the furlough scheme the last thing the country needs is money wasted on schemes to improve traffic flow when there is actually less traffic on the road.

In my opinion it would be shameful to waste public money on schemes that are not needed especially with so many people likely to be losing their jobs.

In my view the junction improvement work on the A40 is just the sort of project that needs to be cancelled to protect public money so it can be used in more useful ways on projects to create jobs or ensuring people do not go hungry or be evicted if they can’t cover their housing costs.

In the past few months the world changed however sadly it seems the powers that be are still ploughing on with schemes of the past which many may view as irrelevant in the ‘new world’ of today.

What’s the point of having a shiny new road if there are fewer cars about and people are going hungry in their homes?

Surely there is more to making a successful town than daft ‘Masterplans’ and linked traffic light systems?

If the money must be spent on the roads then why not spend it making making safety improvements on roads in the housing estates of the town?

For example a good friend recently told me of the terrible problems with reckless drivers speeding through Castlefield yet the traffic calming measures already in the area are seeming inadequate.

Surely the money for the London Road improvements would be better be spent on projects that need to be done for the ‘world of today’ rather than those approved in the ‘world of yesterday’?

What do you think?

My blogs are published regularly here on the WycombeToday.com website.

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