On 18th March I received a copy of the report and recommendation on the inquiry into the compulsory purchase orders for the 3rd Don Crossing.
Having read through the report and attended the Inquiry on the 29th and 30th November on which the reporter, Mr. Culshaw is reporting my assessment can only be that this is a complete travesty of an inquiry.
The reporters conclusions are obviously biased, which is clearly evident to any objective person reading the inquiry documentation.
In the reasoning for his recommendation Mr Culshaw states:
“There is a clearly established need for the scheme”.
However t here was ample evidence provided at the Inquiry to demonstrate that this is not the case. i.e.
- It will not only relocate congestion but increase it.
- The only means of reducing congestion in Aberdeen apart from road usage charging is by modal shift. (This has been recognised in recent European Commission documents)
Culshaw states. “It is supported by the structure plan”
Documents presented to the Inquiry demonstrated that the scheme was a late insertion to the plan and that it contradicted the sustainability ethos of the plan. The plan provides no information to support the scheme. I merely refers to it as an action.
Culshaw adds “ It is supported by regional and local transport strategies.”
Likewise, it was made obvious that the scheme had been added to the strategies at a late stage evident by single unsupported references with absolutely no relationship to the sustainability aims of the strategies.
Culshaw says it had “been granted planning permission”
He was informed throughout the Inquiry that the planning process was undemocratic and a fait accompli. The fact that planning permission had been granted has no relevance to the need for the scheme.
Culshaw notes that the alternatives to the scheme put forward by the alliance had been “justifiably ruled out”
However evidence at the Inquiry demonstrated otherwise. It was made absolutely clear that the alternatives were not adequately considered by Aberdeen City Council.
Culshaw asserts that “suitable mitigation will be put in place” for the adverse impacts of the scheme.
He should be aware from evidence presented at the inquiry that the effects will be severe and no mitigation measures could possibly adequately address the detrimental effects of the scheme.
Culshaw adds “those disadvantages… are outweighed by the desirability of the scheme for Aberdeen as a whole..”
He has ignored the strong evidence presented that the scheme will increase congestion on an already seriously congested city and increase pollution in a city already flouting European clean air laws.
By saying “Some diminution in air quality in Tillydrone is outweighed by improvement in air quality in more polluted parts of Aberdeen” Culshaw shamelessly trivialises serious health issues.
His assertion that air pollution created by the road “is outweighed by improvement in air quality in more polluted parts of Aberdeen “ cannot be made, as it is based on projection from models demonstrated throughout the Inquiry to be seriously flawed. In fact ACC Air Quality Officer has stated in a recent report that this very modelling has resulted in false predicted outcomes.
The reporters reasoning s and likewise the recommendation are therefore obviously biased, I cannot accept this farcical decision.
This outcome is on a par with the eviction of communities by authorities in China, who are at least honest enough not to dress up their intentions with a phoney inquiry and have the decency to provide adequate compensation to the victims.