Not a week goes by without someone tweeting, commenting or moaning about the traffic chaos in Aylesbury. And this week was no exception with delays and jams along the Tring Road truly monumental.
To be fair anyone caught up in the A41 snarl-ups has every right to vent their anger as they were experiencing some of the worst jams seen in the town for years – all ironically caused by ‘road improvement’ work near Bedgrove.
Of course the council gurus are telling us things will improve and that most of the trouble is caused by the closure of the Broughton Lane near to where works to install even more traffic lights is going on.
But is this just the start of more traffic chaos? Critics predicted mayhem when the traffic lights on the Tring Road/Oakfield Road junction were announced and so far have been proved right. Let’s hope, with just weeks to go before the Arla mega-dairy opens adding hundreds of extra lorries onto the A41, things do get better.
It comes as no great surprise to me that once again there is a call for a town bypass. Aylesbury’s MP David Lidington is fearful of a traffic meltdown and joined the call for an bypass stating in last week’s Bucks Herald: “This is something I have supported for a long time.”
Now an e-petition has been set up on line to lobby the Government but this needs a least 100,000 signatures to be acknowledge. Let’s be honest, that target is unlikely to be met.
But how bad is Aylesbury traffic really? The nearby towns of Maidenhead, Slough and Reading all grind to a halt during peak times. Oxford is no different and travelling through High Wycombe, Luton and Watford is just as bad.
What is clear from all the latest road rage is the weight of emotion that is unleashed against the current Aylesbury road system under strain from a burgeoning, mobile and car rich population.
So there is nothing new in the call for a bypass. Aylesbury Now Group presented its own petition with 5,000 signatures in support of a bypass to the county council in 2006, but guess what? Nothing came of it.
So is there a solution? The reality is that Aylesbury is just another overcrowded town like many others crying out for infrastructure surgery. Add another 10,000 homes to the area and may be the balance will tip in favour of some real infrastructure investment. Only time will tell.