The traffic chaos of the last few weeks has brought everyone’s minds back to the decades-old argument of whether the city needs a fourth Trent crossing.
That debate will only intensify with news yesterday that the A52 Eastbound will be closed completely overnight for the next two weeks as engineers work to get on top of the corrosion which caused the closure in the first place.
The shuttage showed how close the existing bridges are to capacity already, and some say itproved how vital a fourth Trent crossing is.
But large infrastructure projects such as a new bridge take a lot of planning, a lot of money, and usually – but not always – a lot of political consensus.
Some at the city council are lukewarm on the idea, favouring a more public transport-oriented approach to reducing congestion and the air pollution it creates.
However the leader of Gedling Borough Council John Clarke is a long-standing supporter of the idea, and thinks a road, pedestrian and tram bridge should go at the back of Colwick Industrial Estate.
The leader of the county council, Kay Cutts, who represents Radcliffe-on-Trent where one side of a Colwick bridge would be, says this would be ‘unacceptable to residents.’
She favours a new bridge, but thinks it should be built near the existing bridge downstream at Gunthorpe, around a 10-mile drive from Trent Bridge.
We asked the Notts MPs connected to the proposal for their thoughts on whether a new bridge was needed, and where it should go.
Gedling’s new Conservative MP Tom Randall is in favour of a bridge ‘in principle’.
He said: “I started to get emails on the subject when I was still a candidate.
“That has increased substantially over recent weeks following the closure of the Clifton Bridge.
“So it’s been on my radar as an issue ever since I was elected, and I put out the video (on Facebook, about the proposed bridge) just to try to start to gauge reaction locally.
“The responses on that…were overwhelmingly positive.
“I think there’s a good case for a big bridge in Colwick or thereabouts in that it would help to alleviate some of the congestion I’ve seen in places like Burton Joyce, and Colwick Loop Road, and help complete the Greater Nottingham ring road.
“But any bridge has to be evidence led. It’s fine for me to have a view on this, but ‘what I reckon’ is nothing against a proper study to actually make the case for it.”