Tuesday, 9 December 2008


I was having a nostalgic moment listening to Chris Rea's song " Road to Hell" earlier this evening.
Some of you might know it. I have modified lyrics but only slightly:

"Well I'm standing on an aquifer,
But the water doesn't flow.
It boils with every poison you can think of.
And I am underneath the street lights and the light of joy I know
Scared beyond belief, way down in the shadows......"

As I listened I couldn't help thinking of our Thanet and then I heard the chorus lines:

"This aint no technological breakdown,
Oh , no, this is the road to hell."

Having avoided Westwood Cross, I see that Thanet Times is highlighting 'Christmas Misery' as grid lock on the newly opened and costly Thanet Access Road continues. The newshounds obviously read the letter in last Friday's IOTG from Mr R Smith from Ash in his letter 'New Road to Nowhere'. I suspect that poor Martin Jefferies at KM Extra is regretting his headline last week ' Road will ease Westwood jams' as much as 'Our Leader' regrets his words. This was the gem from 'Mauwice' (whose 'Edinburgh WoolGate' episode lumbers on towards a showdown in January), " but this road, whilst not a solution to all the problems will help ease congestion..."

The problem we have is that infrastructure and a strategic plan should have been established for Westwood Cross, way before it was developed and the road plan sorted in advance. TDC is now playing catch up with KCC and it is all too little and too late and makes a farce of sustainability and environmental considerations. A quick view of the area on Google Earth and with local knowledge would have raised the possibility of a 'clover leaf' arrangement utilising Poor Hole Lane; a road round Tesco site; a road round Sainsbury site and Star Lane/Nash Road. Heaven knows how it will all work out when 1000 homes along Nash Road come on stream and if 700 homes arrive on Eurokent ( if KCC/TDC's little property company gets its way).

There is however a fresh chance for TDC Planning to get 'strategic'. You will note how Infratil's Master Plan map below shows an access road that bangs through CGP's 'about to be re-fenced' Phase 3 land and its Phase 2 and dare I mention Phase 1 that is also affected despite Planning Consent on 9th Oct. The conflicting 'plans' need to be resolved before poor old Ken Wills has the front of his proposed 'Gateway Building' and nice pond having Infratil's road marching through it and the front has to be the back, like his nice Summit Building up by the B2190.

The eagle eyed will spot that the residents of Pouces Cottages are about to be stuck between a 'rock and a hard place'. If they can fight off Phases 2 and 3 of Gateway, they then have the problem of a main road (possibly dualled) at the end of their gardens instead of being surrounded by industrial sheds.

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