|Pink Blue Route in red.|
Politically I am on the left wing regarding social and environmental issues, but I am on the right with regard to economic and welfare issues, I believe a good proportion of UK residents share these views.
When I write this I hear there will be a public meeting on the 29th of September to discuss the prospect of an Arundel Bypass, the meeting is being organised by various green groups.
For the record, I support improving our public transport, expanding cycling and encouraging children to walk to school, I am a champion of green issues and developing green energy, but I also support an Arundel Bypass. I believe the economic argument is reason alone to build a Bypass, but also the environmental argument in getting traffic to move at it's most efficient speed is a strong one.
The UK Green party supports the policy of zero growth, (not expanding our economy), I fundamentally disagree with this approach, if you think about it, for the last few years we have had near to zero growth, we as a continent have been getting poorer and poorer in relative terms to Asian African and South American countries.
Thankfully our economy is now growing after a painful financial consolidation, but we are now coming out of that and are getting real growth again, But if that growth is to be sustainable then we have to invest in our transport infrastructure, Roads, Rail, Airports and bus services, if we don't do this then I believe our economy will be strangled and our growth will be curtailed.
Arun under duress have committed to build 586 houses per year for the next 15 years, without investment in transport our traffic problems will get worse, so I believe we don't have a choice regarding building a new By-pass. But by sending out signals of division on this issue we will send the wrong message to government, there are plenty of other places in the UK that will take the money for new roads, we can not afford to open this debate up again, we decided 20 years ago to adopt the pink/blue route as the preferred route and we need to send the message to the Transport Secretary that we want that route and want the Bypass now
I know my views will be unpopular with local environmental groups, but I do believe I speak for the majority on this issue. Until next month
Paul Dendle is Arundel Ward & Cabinet Member for Leisure Services on Arun District Council, his email is firstname.lastname@example.org