Dyson's £250m expansion plan backed by Malmesbury Town Council despite traffic fears (From The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald)
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Dyson's £250m expansion plan backed by Malmesbury Town Council despite traffic fears
10:24am Wednesday 23rd April 2014 in News
Dyson's £250m expansion plans for Malmesbury have been backed by the town council despite continued concerns over traffic congestion.
At a town council planning committee meeting on Tuesday, councillors again heard more of the firm’s plans to double the size of Dyson’s headquarters off Tetbury Hill, which could create an additional 3,000 jobs in the long term.
Despite the overall support for the plans members of the public highlighted concerns about the increase in traffic through the town centre and the gridlock at the entrance/exit points, as well as parking and access problems from Dyson employees using Beuttel Way.
Mayor John Gundry said: “We decided to recommend approval of the application.
“What we said is that we approve it but we want an investigation of the traffic management plans for Beuttel Way.
“There were people in the audience concerned about the traffic so we’ve asked Wiltshire Council Highways department to pay attention to that.”
About 15 to 20 members of the public attended the first presentation from Dyson to the town council since the technology firm submitted its outline planning application to Wiltshire Council.
“We are extremely pleased to have this major technology-related investment in the town,” said Coun Gundry.
“This is a big prize and it will do a very great deal to secure jobs in Malmesbury and it will do a great deal to establish Malmesbury and the whole area, and I must stress it is also the whole area, as an attractive destination for technology companies, and what’s wrong with that?
“A large number of consistent measures have been taken to mitigate traffic congestion in the town.”
These traffic measures include the installation of two roundabouts, a bus scheme, more bike racks and showers, different shift start times and incentives to use the car share scheme.
Commenting after the meeting on Facebook, Gavin Grant, a member of the public standing in the Malmesbury by-election in May, said: “Dyson need to listen more and speak less.
“Residents want Tetbury Hill and nearby streets to be safe for children and pedestrians. No-one wants more traffic through the centre of our town.
“Beuttel Way businesses want to operate without traffic jams and reversing Dyson trucks.
“Dyson's new jobs are good news for Malmesbury as is the firm's commitment to the town but their expansion can't be at the price of road safety and gridlock in the town centre.
“Traffic must exit the site away from Tetbury Hill not onto it. We all need to speak up now and with one voice.”
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