Conservative Senedd Member calls for motorway between the north and south of Wales
A Conservative Senedd member has called on the Welsh Government to build a motorway between the north and south of Wales.
Aberconwy MS Janet Finch-Saunders said that she was disappointed that plans to strengthen north-south road connections were not included in the Welsh Government’s National Transport Plan.
The Welsh Government’s Deputy Climate Change Minister Lee Waters said that they were shifting away from building new roads.
“A motorway connecting north to south Wales does not form part of the National Transport Plan nor would it comply with the stated objectives of Llwybr Newydd to encourage mode shift to more sustainable forms of transport. No assessments have been undertaken,” he said.
But Janet Finch-Saunders said that with the “ridiculously poor and unreliable quality of rail services” between north and south, and with the Welsh Government having scrapped the air link, private cars were the most “feasible” form of transport for many.
“If we want an economically stronger and more united Wales it is only reasonable to expect that the Deputy Minister for Climate Change would at least have undertaken assessments of the feasibility of having a straighter road or motorway linking north and south Wales,” she said.
She added that she had been “campaigning for years” for better rail services “but the Welsh Government just have not listened”.
“Countless residents and I drove to the Royal Welsh this week, and we were all reminded yet again of how poor the highways are between North and South Wales, and the journey time is only going to get worse as we will be reduced to driving at 20mph through the countless communities between Conwy and Cardiff!” she said.
“It is to the detriment of the people and economy of Aberconwy and Wales that the Welsh Government have no plan for a motorway connecting North and South”.
The Welsh Government’s new planning document did outline plans for a rail link between the north and south of Wales.
The National Transport Delivery Plan 2022 includes plans to develop the case for the railway to Aberystwyth by 2025 and outline the design by 2027, although the document concedes that the planning stage may well move “beyond” that point.
The Plaid Cymru and Welsh Government cooperation agreement include a commitment to “ask Transport for Wales and other partners to explore how transport links between the north and south of Wales can be developed”.
These would include “how to protect potential travel corridors along the western coast of Wales from Swansea to Bangor”.
The transport document published this week includes amid its ongoing projects a “Swansea Aberystwyth Rail Link” with a commitment to “develop the case for change and option selection” between 2022 and 2025 and “outline design and powers” between “2025 to 2027 and beyond”.
The plan says: “TfW are developing outline plans for improving sustainable transport along travel corridors on the west coast of Wales.
“As part of this work they will identify any potential routes that will need to be reserved for potential future development.”
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