Hedge End’s MP Asks for Low-noise Tarmac for the M27 and M3
By Caroline_W | Friday, November 06, 2009, 11:41
Chris Huhne, MP for Eastleigh, is appealing to the Department of Transport for the M27 and M3 motorways to be resurfaced with low-noise tarmac.
The Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has developed a noise level mapping website and which Chris Huhne says points to some of his constituents suffering more than 75 decibels of noise from the motorways.
He adds, ‘Traffic continues to grow, and this merely increases the noise due to the old concrete surfaces and the noisy join between them which leads to a clunk-clunk as heavy goods vehicles pass over.’
The Defra noise mapping website reports on noise levels for ‘agglomerations’ (urban areas with populations greater than 250,000), major railways (those carrying more than 60,000 passengers annually), major airports (those with more than 50,000 aircraft movements annually) and major roads (roads which more than 6 million vehicles use annually).
Hedge End does not fall within an agglomeration – although Southampton is categorised as one and can be searched on by postcode for noise level – and neither does Hedge End’s railway meet the reporting criteria. However, the noise level for Southampton Airport can be found and also the noise levels for the M27 and the M3.
Finding information on the airport is relatively simple – just select the View Maps option below the map of England on the Defra noise mapping website and ‘Air’ and ‘Southampton’ appear on drop-down lists under Noise Source.
However, I discovered that finding the noise levels for the M27 was trickier. Defra’s noise mapping website instructions say to access the information via the ‘Other Maps’ option. This, though, brings up an error message and so after a longish phone call to the Defra helpline, I can now report a secondary route.
So, if you’re interested... from the Home page, click on Defra Home at the top right. This takes you to the main Defra website. Select A-Z in the top right. Select the letter ‘N’. Click on ‘Noise and Nuisance’, then ‘Noise Mapping’ and finally select 'Major Road Maps’.
The M27 is on map number 8 – and the motorway does indeed have a large amount of purple, representing noise levels of above 75 decibels.
Chris Huhne points out, ‘This problem is not going away, and the Department of Transport owes it to local residents to come clean over the likely timescale for the scheme. I have appealed to the Department to use the savings made on the recent widening scheme, but if that is rejected then ministers should at least say when the resurfacing will happen.’
What are the views in Hedge End?
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Hedgeendpeople would like to hear!