Rufus Barnes proposes a bypass for Saffron Walden in the Walden Local (page 7) but there a pros and cons and of course it requires a council that can plan strategically. He writes:
Some of your correspondents have questioned why John Lodge stood for the County Council on a platform opposing a housing expansion when it is the District Council that is the planning authority.
As I understand it is the County Council which is the principal highway authority for the area so the greatest service Mr. Lodge can do for the town is to ensure that the County Highways Committee and Department are fully involved in considering the highways implication of the various planning applications.
A bypass, at least joining up Ashdon, Radwinter, Thaxted, Debden and Newport Roads, would take through traffic away from the town centre and from unsuitable residential roads and give our town the chance to retain its attractive character for future generations. It just might also help to make the additional housing we are told is needed in the area sustainable.
A bypass is a difficult one because it certainly gets the traffic around a settlement, but it is very expensive and creates a barrier that separates residents from the countryside (as it does in Royston). We understand from UDC that it would require about 5,000-6,000 new homes to be able to have developers fund a bypass for Saffron Walden. That would double the size of the town and so we’d also need a new high school, 4 more primary schools, a few new supermarkets, a new sewage plant and probably a new M11 exit.
What do residents think? Is it worth doubling the size of the Saffron Walden for a bypass?