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12/05/2021

Residents of Gloucester criticise the plans of building about the A38 roundabout due to flooding issues

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Roundabouts are a common feature to manage traffic flow for a slow yet continuous movement of traffic around a circular area. Gloucester residents voiced their grievances about such a roundabout due to consistent flooding in that area. 

This roundabout is located in Longford. It is a route for passengers to commute from Gloucester to Tewkesbury. 

Residents report that this roundabout is the root of the increasing floods due to the rampant buildup of housings and office buildings around the area. Roadworks, which started on July 27 due to a delay caused by the Coronavirus pandemic, are happening in this area to improve the conditions of the roundabout traffic. 

Jimmy Hipwood, aged 68, a resident of Gloucester since 1983, is not convinced that this road work will lead to an improvement in these matters. He has lived here since 1983 and says that flooding has become a permanent issue. He says that the floodings are only getting worse and suspects that the building of housings and offices around this area is a scandal. 

He further states that there used to be fields around this area, but authorities are building offices and restrooms in a field, which is sometimes 3 feet underwater. He believes that the water runs off these areas and onto the roundabout and finally floods the Tewkesbury roads. The drainage system in this area can’t cope with the flooding in these parts. In February, the road had to be shut due to flooding and remained closed for several days. 

Paul Skelton, Tewkesbury Borough Council’s development manager, asserted that the works in Longford roundabout would be completed well before 300 dwellings were occupied in Innsworth/Twigworth sites, which were then under construction. He stated that the developments at Longford, Innsworth, and Twigworth lie in flood zone 1, the least risk-prone area according to the flood maps of the Environment Agency, and the developers have agreed. 

Advanced drainage techniques are being implemented to improve the drainage facilities of the fields. A spokesman of Robert Hitchins Ltd, the company which has undertaken the construction of the Longford roundabout, stated that they aimed to ease traffic around the roundabout which suffers congestion at peak hours. He assures that an increase in capacity will improve the long journey hours and reduce queuing of cars in the roundabout along with an upgrade to the existing signalised pedestrian crossing and a new crossing for increased safety on A40’s westbound side. 

As there is a possibility of driver delay due to the construction, a major portion of the work will be done on the existing carriageway avoiding the peak hours. Councils of Cheltenham Borough, Tewkesbury, and Gloucester City had decided to develop adjoining land at Innsworth for the construction of buildings as a part of their Joint Core Strategy agreement.

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