Trees in line for chop for access road in Ludlow
More than 100 trees could be felled to make way for an access road off the A49 to a proposed housing development in Ludlow.
Crest Nicholson has submitted a planning application to create an access from the A49 to the development of 137 homes at Foldgate Lane.
The housing scheme was approved by a planning inspector in 2016 after a long battle against the proposal by residents, councillors and Ludford Parish Council.
Councillor Andy Boddington said the new road would potentially mean chopping down trees.
"The main casualty of this is more than 100 young-mature and semi-mature trees," he said.
"There is a plan in place for replacement trees but these will take some time to mature, during which time at least a dozen homes will suffer undesirable traffic noise and air pollution.
"Any tree removal is likely to be controversial in the current febrile debate about the growing practice of hedge netting. If this development is to go ahead, and many people wish it would not, it seems there is no other option other than removal of the trees. But that must not happen until the nesting season ends."
To meet national road safety guidelines, the A49 must be widened by 1.7 metres to accommodate a ghost island for traffic turning right into the development. An extensive visibility splay is needed for traffic leaving the site.
The aim is to meet national standards for access to and from 60mph trunk roads.
However, Councillor Boddington said the developer is seeking a 'departure from standards' after its highways consultants said the visibility requirement cannot be provided to the north due to limitations of available land.
"This means that construction traffic and future residents wishing to turn right out of the development towards Hereford will not see vehicles accelerating south from the Sheet roundabout as early as Department for Transport standards demand," he added.
"I don’t feel this scheme is safe. I have never thought a T-Junction onto the A49 could be safe. It is difficult to be happy with this application. It is equally difficult to see what alternative there is."