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Thursday, February 22, 2024

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A bridge too far: Graham Finch thinks that a solution to the city’s traffic crisis shouldn’t cost the earth

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Occasional Gedling Eye columnist Graham Finch says he wants the city to ‘start thinking outside the box’ to solve current traffic crisis…

Nottingham was named as the most congested city in the world for a brief moment last Monday after traffic was brought to a standstill for hours following the Clifton Bridge closure.

Since then, voices across the city have been calling on the councils to get to work on a fourth crossing over the Trent to alleviate the problem.

But is this really the answer?

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Our own leader John Clarke thinks so.

But as our world faces a looming climate crisis, this insistence on pandering to the road user seems out of touch.

The problem is not down to a lack of crossings but having too many cars on the road. We’re only encouraging car ownership by ensuring smoother commutes into the city and this can’t continue: it’s just a quick fix.

People now need to be encouraged out of their cars and onto buses and trams or into electric vehicles.

Just to be clear (I can hear some of you saying it now): I’m not a green lefty who is anti-business.

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Of course I want Nottingham to flourish and grow (it’s home!), but just not at the expense of a world my grandchildren hope to inherit in twenty years’ time.

Our icebergs are melting, sea levels rising, the planet warming and species quickly facing extinction; it doesn’t take a person with a degree to work out we’re in big trouble.

As I said, I don’t have a degree, but we do need our academics and eggheads to get their heads together and find a greener solution to solve our plight.

Quicker, greener transport is needed to ensure we can get around this metropolis without a cost to the environment.

It’s like something you’d expect to see in an episode of The Simpsons when you hear city bosses and the public chanting for ‘another bridge, another bridge’ when asked how we solve the congestion crisis. Please, let’s start thinking out of the box.

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Come on, Nottingham. You claim to be a progressive forward-thinking city, so let’s start thinking like one.

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