Cogges Link Road inquiry: day 14

November 10th, 2011 by Kate Griffin Leave a reply »

This took place on Wednesday 9th November and began with housekeeping business. The planning inspector asked for the traffic queue data on Ducklington Lane that he had requested the previous day. David Holgate QC, lawyer for the county council, replied that it was being done that same day. Mr Holgate added that the council was currently handling seven outstanding submissions from non-statutory objectors.

Mark Lowe then cross-examined Ian Woods, traffic and economics witness for the county council. The council is working on the assumption that preparations for both schemes will cost the same, but Mr Woods confirmed that this assumption is not based on any particular evidence. The Mawle Trust estimates that the Shores Green construction cost would be £4.8 million.
Mr Lowe also asked if the county has any more recent accident costing figures. (The current numbers are from 2004.) Mr Woods said no, the 2004 figures are the most recent the county has. Mr Lowe said that they are misleading and should be adjusted.

The inquiry took a break for a site visit by the planning inspector, representatives from the Mawle Trust and the county and four non-statutory objectors. Those on the site visit walked along the route of the proposed CLR and visited areas of Cogges which flooded in 2007.

The inquiry resumed at 5pm and the inspector stated that it was unlikely the inquiry would close this week.

Mr Lowe continued cross-examining Mr Woods. Key points:

  • The county’s traffic modelling assumes a 4% growth in traffic every five years, whereas the reality is a year by year reduction in traffic since 2007.
  • The county’s modelling shows 21% more traffic in the East Witney area than has been observed in reality.
  • Traffic estimates have not taken into account the fact that recessions tend to flatten the growth rate of traffic.
  • Mr Woods explained that the county traffic model was set up before he began work on the project and that he personally would have set it up differently.
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