Yes, it’s true.
The Oxford to Cambridge Expressway (a linked, multi-lane motorway) has finally been cancelled. Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, has decided that the costs of the new road simply outweigh the benefits. Read about the decision here.
However, the Department for Transport will instead investigate the need for more targeted road interventions in the region to support the recently launched spatial framework.
The framework is the first step towards stimulating rapid economic growth within the Oxford-Cambridge ‘Arc’, an area covering Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Northamptonshire, Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire (around 4,500 square miles). Plans for the area include industrial, business, and housing zones (with up to 1.5 million new houses being suggested as a “sustainable” target, or the equivalent of about nine Milton Keynes).
“Unleashing” economic growth in the South East hardly meets the promise to level up the UK. It is also very hard to see how the Arc as envisaged would enable the Government to meet its net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. And the harm to wildlife – in the wake of the destruction wrought by HS2 Ltd – cannot be justified or mitigated.
If you agree, please find out the position of your local party on the Arc and vote accordingly in the local elections on Thursday 6th May.
In addition, please contribute to the map showing development proposals across the UK. Though the campaign has been running for under a week, nearly 200 groups and individuals have already added a pin to the map, showing the scale of development currently proposed. We plan to use the map to raise awareness, join groups together and to lobby decision-makers. To add your own pin, please complete the form (here). It takes just a few minutes. To view the map, click here.