Eliminate the bad – retain the good

The coronavirus has had a significant impact on all of us and we are desperate to eradicate it. But despite all the negative impact, can we maintain the positives that we have seen?

The environment

Many cars have been idle in the driveway and people have started walking and cycling both for their daily shopping and for their daily exercise; this has a positive impact on both the health of the individual and on the climate. There are many stories of how people are enjoying the clearer skies, whilst others talk about how they enjoy hearing birdsong now that the noise from traffic and air travel has significantly reduced.

For many years Weybridge High Street has had particularly poor air quality due to traffic congestion. Last year it was selected as one of two places in Elmbridge (the other being Hampton Court) for continuous air quality monitoring and recent figures show that average levels of NO2 have fallen from previously high concentrations of up to 55 μg/m3 to approximately 24 μg/m3 by the end of April. (National policy is that nitrogen dioxide concentrations should not regularly exceed 40 μg/m3.)

Wouldn’t it be good if our renewed awareness of our environment was translated into long term action for sustainable improvements? Can we maintain the current air quality when the emergency measures start to be lifted? Should we introduce an Elmbridge low emissions zone? Can we plant more trees and hedges? Will Surrey County Council install more cycle lanes and change all buses to be electric or fuel-cell powered? Can we encourage more children to walk or cycle to school?

3 thoughts on “Eliminate the bad – retain the good

  1. Keeping the good- lose the bad?
    While I like to see the cyclists about, good yes, but a minority of them are slowly strangling the pavements and muddy lanes leading to the centre of Weybridge.Older people are under constant threat of being injured by speeding cyclists; mothers with young children are also at risk. Motor scooters are also appearing in these lanes.–bad , yes
    Ask the young mums,ask the small shop-owners what they think of this and ,in my experience,they dont like the drop in footfall and loss of business,in part due the above .No politician has paid the slightest interest to the problem and I hope the public will punish them.I wish to dump my old car but will not do so until it is safe to walk into Weybridge.
    Thats my catch-phrase- safe walking -its healthier than cycling…discuss?
    w.phipps

  2. That’s just moving the pollution around. We need to reduce it! It can already be quite unpleasant to walk along Heath Road during the rush hour.

    But if that were to be considered, you would have to redesign the junction near the station, which is very dangerous. Someone drove into my husband’s car a few years ago, believing it to be a normal roundabout. And you would have to block off Elgin Road at one end to avoid traffic driving along there.

  3. Would it be possible to re-direct traffic up and around pass the railway station so as to keep Weybridge a traffic free zone?.

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