|A quiet haven at present|
When the original plans for reconnection were published four years ago LINK they attracted opposition from the Wembley Community Association which wanted to keep the low traffic levels of North End Road which serves the quiet residential area of Empire Court and Danes Court. At present the road ends in pedestrian and cyclist ramps at Olympic Way between Arena House (soon to be a secondary free school) and 1 Olympic Way. Since 2009 the Victoria Hall student accommodation has been built on North End Road.
|North End Road leading to Victoria Hall|
Henry Lancashire in his submission to Brent Council says that the proposed link will conflict with the popular bus stop opposite Wembley Park Station and increase the danger of pedestrian access to the bus stop. He states that the current access enables cyclists to take a safe route from the Brent River Park and can only increase in popularity if the proposed cycling/pedestrian bridge across the Chiltern Line from St David's Close is built. Brent Cyclists also express a preference for the link from North End Road to Bridge Road to be for cycling only. They state 'This would be far cheaper to implement than a connection for motor vehicles, and, with work and highway adoption or land-take in the Atlas Way/Fourth Way/Fifth Way area, could provide a viable, high-quality corridor for walking and cycling via the Brent River Path all the way from Stonebridge Park to Bridge Road.
Lancashire suggest that the required land acquisition for the link will be a) costly and b) damaging and in particular that the green space associated with the river opposite Victoria Hall will be lost: 'This is a valuable wildlife corridor used by species including wrens, robins, blackbirds and pipistrelle bats'.
Brent Council respond that the bus stop will be moved 'slightly to the south' and will be accessed via the Olympic Way underpass (people dash across the road at present and I don't really see that changing). They say negotiations are still going on for land acquisition and they are trying to keep the costs down: 'The scheme has been revised to remove the need for land from Victoria Hall'.
In their submission to the Council Quintain Estates and Developments state:
We do not consider this connection to be justified to mitigate the impacts of development and instead it appears mainly top be based on a need to provide circulation to and from the Industrial Estate on Stadium Event Days. In any event, it is not required to mitigate the impacts of development currently consented in the regeneration areas.I am currently trying to find the likely cost of the proposal which in 2009 was put at £20m.