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Leader’s statement on the cancellation of the Expressway project

Following the government’s announcement that proposals for an Expressway between Oxford and Cambridge have been scrapped, the Leader of South Oxfordshire District Council has welcomed the news and offered a note of caution about the government’s next steps.

The district council formally withdrew support for the Expressway at its meeting in July 2019 following a motion put forward by Cllr Robin Bennett.

Cllr Sue Cooper, Leader of South Oxfordshire District Council, said: “Alongside many people across the district we have frequently raised concerns and campaigned against the Expressway since plans for this new road were first revealed, and so we welcome the news that the government has finally cancelled the project.   

“The new road was not financially viable and would have caused significant damage across the county, potentially destroying large areas of farmland and habitats.  It would have also placed a huge physical barrier through the district, destroying entire communities in the process.   

“In South Oxfordshire we have declared climate and ecological emergencies. As a country we should be resolutely focused on tackling these issues and protecting the environment for future generations, not on projects which would increase traffic onto our existing roads, and significantly increase CO2 emissions and noise pollution. 

“It is extremely important the government now focuses on sustainable and low-carbon transport options for the area like the East to West Rail project and improved and additional cycle routes.”