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'Otley faces massive rise in traffic from new housing'
Otley is facing a “massive increase in traffic” if new housing plans proceed.
That is the warning being made by recently-formed Facebook campaign group Otley Development Disgrace (ODD).
The campaign has already warned that the town could increase in size by a fifth over the next 15 years, should the 1,177-plus homes that have been earmarked for the area be built.
Now it has turned its attention to the impact of the expansion envisaged in the Local Development Framework on local roads.
A spokesman for ODD said: “This site-oriented planning process has resulted in a very substantial proposed increase in the overall planned size of Otley, without consideration being given to the combined impact that several large housing developments sites will have on the town and its infrastructure.
“Otley’s schools, doctors, dentists and car parks are already full but the greatest concerns are probably about the impact on transport infrastructure – particularly as the majority of the new residents will inevitably work out of town.
“The overall impact on Otley is complicated by the fact that one of the proposed developments, ‘east of Otley’, includes the construction of a relief road from Stephen H Smith’s garden centre to the existing roundabout at the start of the Leeds Road.
“While the primary role of the relief road is to provide access to/from the new development, it will clearly also divert some through-traffic from the town centre.”
He added that the inspector for what was then the Leeds Unitary Development Plan in 2005, voiced specific concerns about the east of Otley’s impact on the A660 – the main road to and from town.
Those problems would be exacerbated by the fact several other large housing schemes in Otley, including the 198-home Garnett’s redevelopment, are also proceeding.
The ODD spokesman added: “Otley’s already inadequate transport links with key employment centres like Leeds and Bradford will be subjected to a disproportionally large increase in traffic volume, this without any specific plans to make capacity improvements.”
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