The proposed removal of the Perry Barr flyover would be the ‘stupidest’ thing the council has ever done, according to a local councillor.
Speaking following the announcement of a public consultation over proposed infrastructure ‘improvements’ in the area, local councillor Jon Hunt (Lib Dem) labelled the council as ‘utterly stubborn’ for not listening to local concerns.
And he has urged them once again to reconsider the plans , adding that residents will be stepping up their campaigns against the proposals in the coming weeks.
On Wednesday (May 29) the council announced plans to hold a public consultation into the £27.1 million proposals between June 3 and July 19.
If passed the proposals are due for completion by the end of 2021, and include the removal of the A34 flyover, the retention of the A34 underpass and the replacement of the A34/A4040 roundabout with a four-arm traffic signal junction.
The council has encouraged people to come forward with their views, with Cllr Waseem Zaffar even indicating that residents were welcome to submit their own alternative proposals.
But Cllr Hunt believes that the people have already made their views clear, with a petition to stop the demolition of the flyover already reaching over 1,200 signatures.
“Some of the work in this area – such as a new station – is to be welcomed but insisting on removal of the A34 flyover is the daftest idea of them all,” he said.
“The council has been utterly stubborn in ignoring local concerns over this – and I fear that among many stupid things it has done, this may prove the stupidest.
“We face two years of disruption. That means traffic, including buses, will struggle to get through Perry Barr while the work is going on. Life will be impossible for local residents.
“The flyover lifts one busy commuter route, the A34, over another, the A435 which brings in huge amounts of traffic from north Birmingham. The new plan means that traffic will be sitting at lights spilling out fumes right on the edge of the proposed new Perry Barr village. It is not an improvement. It will be like the Scott Arms further up the A34.
“On top of that, this is a huge gamble. At £42 million (£27m for the roadworks and £15m for the station) the project is incredibly complex and it has to be completed by 2022.
“Only a few days ago the roads in north Birmingham were paralysed at the quietest time of the week. That was because roads were closed for the road run on Sunday and then there was an accident on the Aston Expressway.
“This is described as a regeneration scheme but the graphics now make clear that it will be a high intensity development placed alongside a traffic light junction with permanent traffic queues.
“We will be stepping up local campaigning against this and I urge the council to think again before it is too late.”
To sign the petition against the demolition, go here