OUR BYPASS - WHERE WE ARE NOW....
Well, its about time we stood back and took stock of where we stand : it seems like the imminent threat of the Railfreight Depot has receded, but where does that leave the Bypass?
Most importantly, the "Planning Permission" that we always took for granted had actually expired in the mid 90s, as we found out at the Celcon Factory Inquiry.
Our Bypass had always had "saved policy" status in the South East plan, but that was quietly removed last June, and now the South East plan itself has been scrapped by the Coalition Government. ( there is a silver lining, because that same South East Plan was Cemex/Body's only justification for the Railfreight scheme).
Despite Paul Carters public pledge to "fast track" a new planning application, the truth is that KCC at this time couldn't afford an application for a garden shed.
What with lunatic TV stations, Icelandic adventures, obscene salaries and the recession, their financial situation is so perilous that our Bypass isn't just on a back burner, its out at the bottom of the garden.
And what has also become apparent in the past year or so, that our Bypass is acting as a magnet for greedy developers. And KCC member for transport Nick Chard recently pointed out that even if the whole of Celcon and the Cemex landfill site were used for housing development, it would not make enough to pay for a Bypass !!
Unless we want to become a town double the size we are now, our beloved Bypass is dead. And even if they built enough houses to pay for it, that would generate so much traffic we would be right back where we started. So we might as well just grit our teeth and accept what we have got.
So, whilst we will always have "Borough Green Bypass" tattooed onto our hearts, in reality the only solution is to back the ever-growing campaign for East Facing Slips at Junction 5 of the M26, which would have added benefits to a wide area of Kent, not just Borough Green. So have a look at www.j5-slips.org
(See also "CAUTION" page)