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Roads to Nowhere

M4 plans a 'backward step' which won't take Wales forward

21 September 2016

Campaign for Better Transport has responded to the publication of the Welsh Government programme 'Taking Wales Forward', which includes a commitment to deliver an M4 relief road, ahead of the forthcoming public inquiry into the scheme.

James MacColl, Head of Campaigns, said:

"We welcome the commitment to vital public transport investment, particularly in buses, which are the most used form of public transport and the most at threat from loss of funding. But it is disappointing this is undermined by retaining plans for the M4 relief road, prejudging the independent inquiry which has not yet taken place.

"A new motorway across the Gwent Levels would be hugely expensive in both financial and environmental terms, and its construction would take Wales backward not forward. Committing over £1bn of funding to just 24km of road, at a time when the First Minister is warning that cuts elsewhere are inevitable, risks starving the rest of Wales' transport system of essential investment."

ENDS

For further information please contact James MacColl, Head of Campaigns on 020 7566 6484 / 07984 773 468 orjames.maccoll@bettertransport.org.uk

Notes to Editors

1. View 'Taking Wales Forward 2016-2021' in full here.  The programme's transport commitments include:

  • Deliver an M4 relief road, and improvements to the A55, the A40 in West Wales and other trunk roads
  • Create a South Wales Metro and advance the development of a North Wales Metro system
  • Develop a new, not-for-profit, rail franchise and deliver a more effective network of bus services once powers have been devolved
  • Ensure seamless ticketing arrangements and improved marketing as part of the new travel arrangements for Wales
  • Ensure better access to active travel for all

2. Campaign for Better Transport has previously commented favourably on Wales' bus plans.

3. Campaign for Better Transport is objecting to the M4 proposals which would see a new motorway constructed across protected wildlife sites.

4. Campaign for Better Transport is the UK's leading authority on sustainable transport. We champion transport solutions that improve people's lives and reduce environmental damage. Our campaigns push innovative, practical policies at local and national levels. Campaign for Better Transport Charitable Trust is a registered charity (1101929).