HS2 Environmental Statement Working Draft (WDES)

The commenting phase of this Document is now closed and this page is just for information.

Below are the comments you forwarded to the Forum for publication:

Question ReferenceQuestion
1Hs2 questions: I have asked which way the construction traffic will go through Toton and why can't construction materials be moved In and out by rail. I also asked if that is not possible then the A52 junction should be done first and use that for construction traffic for hs2.
2Will parking at the East Midlands Hub in Toton be free of charge? If not, what actions are HS2 taking to prevent HS2 customers parking on the streets in the area surrounding the hub?
3Please explain why the Greenwood Community Centre, Toton is included in Compound Area during Construction of HS2.
Please explain why the Compound Area cannot be re-drawn to exclude the Greenwood Community Centre from the Area during construction of HS2.
Where is the "temporary replacement community facility" indicated on the key to Map CT-05-433?
4Please provide an accurate map of all the affected (and unaffected) Ancient and Veteran Trees so that all those deemed to be "unaffected" by the development are adequately protected.
5Map CT-05-434a shows a "stub" on the roundabout on the access road from the A52 to the HS2 Hub. What is the purpose of this connection to the roundabout? Broxtowe plan 17/00499 which identifies the development to take place on the land West of Stapleford Lane does not provide any connection to this stub.
6Next to the proposed hub at Toton you have indicated that you will be closing access to the Toton fields nature reserve for the entirety of the works and demolishing the community centre! You make no explanation as to why this is needed. Why do you need to take this whole area, removing a valuable community space and venue? I run round here, it will massively impact on me. I can only imagine that it is to facilitate an entrance to the hub site through Chester Green off Banks Road. This is unacceptable, it's right near a primary school and the road is WAY too small for site traffic, you need an alternative route into the site from the A52. I also don't see where you have considered the BEST course of action to minimalise the disruption. You clearly haven't spoken to residents about this!

I'm unsure as you why you need to close large areas of the Toton Nature reserve - that are not part of the hub construction area - unless you plan to use the area for construction vehicles etc. If this is the case, then I can't see how you can protect the trees, river and wildlife we have there? Its not an open space!? Why is it all to be closed to residents for 6 years?! Why can it not be phased with access between the areas?
7Ref HS2 local problems;

Closure of the bridleways. No local authority or risk assessor could allow shared use of the footpath that would be retained, the more-so because of the numbers of riders involved. Therefore the riders could not use it. Lost to them.

Loss of amenity. The riders took advantage of the sidings closure to ride quickly in spacious and difficult conditions. It is testing for them. They like this. Closure means a serious loss of amenity for them.

The Greenwood Centre. Demolition and non-replacement of the centre without carefully explained reasons is simple vandalism and no credit to a project promoted as a wonderful thing. I see no reason why the centre could not be left alone and used throughout the whole build. This action plus the lack of real local consultation is a mistake by HS2. There should be organised consultation at Toton as at Long Eaton, Trowell, Kegworth. Toton is billed as THE hub after all.

Movement of materials by rail. HS2 have little ambition to move materials by rail. They state less 20% of material will be moved in and out Euston by rail. They may have an excuse there, it's a busy working station. At Toton, not so. Here is an established heavy rail material transfer place. Rail deliveries to Toton could be reshipped to other local construction hubs, the local network map suggests this, especially the Red Hill, Trent valley area. Not to use every opportunity to ship by rail rather than road surely does not accord with government policy.

Local construction nuisances. The EBC critique of the WDES is extensive and a particular point is made about piling. There is likely to be a lot of it and the operation is noisy, EBC are demanding the use of screw-piling to reduce the noise. CTTC should consider the same point.
8"As a Toton resident my comments are specific to the construction of the Toton Hub
The current positioning of the new station could be improved by repositioning it closer to the A52. By doing this the Toton residents would benefit from the natural noise mitigation afforded by the raised land levels on the Toton side of the line.
My view – Reposition the Station closer to the A52
 
There is uncertainty about the actual time line for the construction of the A52 access to the station.  This is a major concern as roads around Toton are already overloaded and certainly could not cope with construction traffic for both the station and the changes to the road network.
My view – The construction of the A52 access roads must be constructed early and before any construction commences on the station. All construction traffic thereafter must only use the A52 access.
 
As stated in 2 above, the access roads around Toton are already overloaded. There are two other areas of redevelopment scheduled for Toton in the coming years alongside HS2. Namely the development of housing at the top of Stapleford Lane and the development of housing on the Chetwynd Barracks. Each of the 3 developments individually will cause serious movement issues for Toton residents and together will probably bring the whole area to a complete standstill. The implications of all these developments over the next ten years needs to be properly and jointly assessed to determine the timely planning and creation of additional access roads. We are fed up of hearing, from supposed experts who don’t live in the area that studies have been done and there won’t be a problem.
My view – There needs to be further transport studies undertaken and a fully integrated development plan developed for Toton which includes all relevant parties especially the residents.
             
 HS2 refuse to consult directly with residents around the Toton hub station on areas of concern which are unique to the construction of the station and will have a lasting impact on the community. This is not acceptable in a democratic society.
My view – There must be better direct communication with Toton residents
 
I do not believe that sufficient assessment has been undertaken regarding of the effects of noise, light and vibration that will impact on the residents who live near the sidings, both during and after construction. Bearing in mind that the lines/station are to be constructed at height this will allowing noise, light and vibration to travel unhindered.
My view – A greater level of detail is required to assess the impact of noise, light, vibration on the residents who live near the sidings both during and after construction. The definition of “near the sidings” needs to be confirmed as the raised level of the lines/platforms means this pollution will travel farther that just the first row of houses.
 
The latest sets of plans shows a seriously large area of concrete planned for parking on site. There are two issues with this. Firstly it’s a silly thing to do when the area is a potential flood plain and secondly its’ ugly and not wanted.
My view – A small multi story car park would work and look a lot better.
 
I was horrified to see on the latest set of plans that HS2 intend to take the land of the Toton Fields Nature Reserve for an undisclosed period as land required during construction. This would result in the demolition of the Greenwood Community Centre which is in daily use by different sections of the community and the felling of the woodland. This proposal is totally unacceptable for so many reasons.
With all the other large areas of land highlighted as “land required during construction” there is already sufficient area to facilitate construction
The woodland had been planted for 30 years plus and has grown alongside the Toton community and is now a part of the Toton community. The paths are used daily by residents for exercise, dog walking, bike riding etc. It’s an area which is away from traffic and in my case, as I am disabled and with a fused neck, allows me to walk without having to constantly look down to check for trip hazards.
The community centre is used on a daily basis by various groups of all ages. We cannot manage without it.
That parcel of land has no easy access other than via Banks Road. Construction traffic via Banks Road and indeed contractor’s vehicles parking on Banks Road just cannot happen.
Statements that the area would be reinstated and the community centre would be rebuilt holds no weight. We have all learnt the painful truth, following the NET development that as soon as the project goes over budget, the accountants take over and only the minimum of work is undertaken. We already see that HS2 Phase 1 is way over budget and cost savings are being sought. Exactly the same will happen with the following phases as well. In short we don’t accept or believe promises made.
My view – There is absolutely no reason why that parcel of land is needed by HS2 and it should not be used or affected in any way.
   
It is proposed that all bridleways will be closed in and around the Hub site. HS2 state horses will share all existing paths with walkers, dog walkers, cyclists and runners. This is plainly not acceptable as horses do not mix too well with the other path users and there are serious implications for injury or worse to occur.
My view - Separate bridleways must be used to ensure the continued safety of all users."
9"
As a Toton resident my comments are specific to the construction of the Toton Hub
After visiting the recently HS2 presentation held at the West Park Leisure Centre in Long Eaton I  was horrified to see on the latest set of plans that HS2 intend to take the land of the Toton Fields Nature Reserve for an undisclosed period as land required during construction. This would result in the demolition of the Greenwood Community Centre and this proposal is totally unacceptable for so many reasons, but mainly because the centre is in daily use by different sections of the community, including:-
1.1.1.A playgroup every weekday morning – which cannot, as suggested in your document H16, be accommodated into the other playgroup run at St Peters Church, or the local infant school.
1.1.2.Toton Beavers, Cubs and Scout Groups and Toton Rainbow, Brownie and Guide Groups in the weekday evenings. Again these cannot be accommodated into the other local Guiding & Scout groups. In fact the groups at the Greenwood Community Centre were created as the other local groups were too large and could not accept any more youngsters.
1.1.3.Afternoon groups for the older residents of Toton, which provide a valuable opportunity for some lonely residents to get out of their homes and enjoy the company of others, thereby preventing isolation.
1.1.4.Weekend use by residents for children’s parties and other events, including meetings with our local councillors and MP.
1.1.5.Broxtowe Borough Council also uses the Community Centre for Community Action Meetings and as a double polling station.    With all the other large areas of land highlighted as “land required during construction” there is already a sufficient area to facilitate construction without the need to restrict access to, or even demolish this very valuable local resource.
1.2.    The felling of the woodland which has been planted for 30 years plus and has grown alongside the Toton community and is now a part of the Toton community. The paths are used daily by residents for exercise, dog walking, bike riding etc. It’s an area which is away from traffic and in my case, as I am disabled and with a fused neck, allows me to walk without having to constantly look down to check for trip hazards.
1.3.    That parcel of land that the community Centre sits on has no easy access other than via Banks Road. Construction traffic cannot use Banks Road due the inherent dangers to the children walking to school and the already congested road, which is also why contractor’s vehicles parking on Banks Road just cannot happen.
1.4.    Statements that the area would be reinstated and the community centre would be rebuilt holds no weight. We have all learnt the painful truth, following the NET development that as soon as the project goes over budget, the accountants take over and only the minimum of work is undertaken. We already see that HS2 Phase 1 is way over budget and cost savings are being sought. Exactly the same will happen with the following phases as well. In short we don’t accept or believe promises made.
My view – There is absolutely no reason why that parcel of land is needed by HS2 and it should not be used or affected in any way and the Greenwood Community Centre needs to remain accessible at all times and MUS NOT BE demolished.   
The current positioning of the new station could be improved by repositioning it closer to the A52. By doing this the Toton residents would benefit from the natural noise mitigation afforded by the raised land levels on the Toton side of the line.
My view – Reposition the Station closer to the A52
 
There is uncertainty about the actual time line for the construction of the A52 access to the station.  This is a major concern as roads around Toton are already overloaded and certainly could not cope with construction traffic for both the station and the changes to the road network.
My view – The construction of the A52 access roads must be constructed early and before and construction commences on the station. ALL CONSTRUCTION TRAFFIC THEREAFTER MUST ONLY USE THE A52 ACCESS.
 
As stated in 2 above, the access roads around Toton are already overloaded. There are two other areas of redevelopment scheduled for Toton in the coming years alongside HS2. Namely the development of housing at the top of Stapleford Lane and the development of housing on the Chetwynd Barracks. Each of the 3 developments individually will cause serious movement issues for Toton residents and together will probably bring the whole area to a complete standstill. The implications of all these developments over the next ten years needs to be properly and jointly assessed to determine the timely planning and creation of additional access roads. We are fed up of hearing, from supposed experts who don’t live in the area that studies have been done and there won’t be a problem.
My view – There needs to be further transport studies undertaken and a fully integrated development plan developed for Toton which includes all relevant parties especially the residents.
             
 HS2 refuse to consult directly with Toton residents or arrange meetings/displays at the Greenwood Community Centre regarding areas of concern which are unique to the construction of the Toton Hub station and will have a lasting impact on the community. This is not acceptable in a democratic society.
My view – There must be better direct communication with Toton residents.
 
I do not believe that sufficient assessment has been undertaken regarding of the effects of noise, light and vibration that will impact on the residents who live near the sidings, both during and after construction. Bearing in mind that the lines/station are to be constructed at height this will allowing noise, light and vibration to travel unhindered.
My view – A greater level of detail in required to assess the impact of noise, light, vibration on the residents who live near the sidings both during and after construction. The definition of “near the sidings” needs to be confirmed as the raised level of the lines/platforms means this pollution will travel farther that just the first row of houses.
 
The latest sets of plans shows a seriously large area of concrete planned for parking on site. There are two issues with this. Firstly it’s a silly thing to do when the area is a potential flood plain and secondly its’ ugly and not wanted. Any parking need to be on a porous surface with soak-a-way to prevent flooding,
My view – A small multi story car park would be a better idea.
 
It is proposed that all bridleways will be closed in and around the Hub site. HS2 state horses will share all existing paths with walkers, dog walkers, cyclists and runners. This is plainly not acceptable as horses do not mix too well with the other path users and there are serious implications for injury or worse to occur.
My view - Separate bridleways must be used to ensure the continued safety of all users."
10"Please find below, my response to the HS2 questionnaire submitted today.

Pt 1;

I live adjacent to Toton Sidings. I am environmentally conscious, a member of Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust and a volunteer at Attenborough Nature Reserve.
We walk our dog twice daily along the entire footpath at the top of Banks Road on the west of the houses down to Manor Park. We will lose most of this footpath and all this walk. We meet and talk to many other dog walkers daily who will also be affected.
She walks off the lead once we reach the footpath. How are dogs to walk off the lead when most of the footpath is to be closed? There is no alternative.
Our dog also swims in the River Erewash, like many others, which is most accessible close to the Greenwood Community Centre and Toton Fields Nature Reserve. It is proposed this area is to be used for the construction phase, but no justification as to why. To demolish our community centre is nonsensical. To rip up a nature reserve which many people have put so much effort into is a disgrace. The wildlife will be lost. Who has categorised the flora and fauna?
People fish in the river, which is shallow, clear and gravel bedded. The fish will not tolerate contaminated churned up water caused by construction. We will then lose spectacular species such as Kingfishers and Egrets which live along the river.
What else will the Erewash during construction carry down into Attenborough Nature Reserve, a resounding and nationally recognised nature reserve 50 years in the making, acknowledged by Sir David Attenborough himself?
I am a regular triathlete and run regularly up and down the footpaths of Toton Sidings. I can straight out of my door, onto the Sidings and run up and down a good route, used by many other runners. Where are we supposed to run somewhere like that on our doorstep off the roads?
I am a cyclist and use this path as do other people, if we want to avoid the Banks Road, which can be busy, especially at commuter times, e.g. the lights at the bottom of Banks Road. This footpath bypasses the traffic, especially for people cycling down to Toton Corner or into Long Eaton.
The footpaths also provide shortcut access to the bridge over Toton Sidings into Long Eaton, via ASDA either by foot or on bike.
I use this route to take my bike onto the towpath alongside the Erewash Canal to cycle up to Shipley Park. Not only is access to the canal towpath over the bridge at the Sidings going to be inaccessible but parts of Erewash Canal towpath itself will be inaccessible around Stapleford and Sandiacre heading up the old Nutbrook Trail. Cyclists and walkers up this trail will be denied access. One long way round to join the south of the Erewash Canal is on the River Trent towpath from Attenborough to Sawley, but there will be construction along here too to build a viaduct across the Trent. There will be huge impact on walkers on cyclists in this area.
Another important issue will be the traffic congestion in the area. Banks Road is the only route into the Banks Road housing estate and then on to the Greenwood Community Centre, proposed as part of the construction site. Whilst alternative routes into the construction site are being considered off the A52 or via Bessell Lane, how will the access before these alternative routes to the site be organised? Stapleford Lane Toton, Toton Lane Stapleford, the main road running through Stapleford town centre and towards Sandiacre are already very congested. More traffic will gridlock the area.
The construction will result in air and noise pollution. We can hear the trains and activities at the Sidings already, especially at night when the windows are open. It will be even worse when construction starts, and for a minimum of 6 years. Airborne particulates from diesel vehicles, digging, demolishing buildings, including domestic properties in Long Eaton, mixing concrete etc will severely impact the air quality. How is this to be monitored and by who? What will happen if the air quality drops significantly. What action will be taken?


Pt 2;

I am staunchly against HS2.

I am a regular user of public transport and I live adjacent to Toton Sidings, site of the proposed East Midlands hub. So in principle I am a supporter of public transport projects. However, this proposed spend of £50-60bn cannot be justified. No-one can justify or prove how it will improve the economies in this area. Billions to save up to 20minutes on a train to London is not enough justification. The proposed route will not touch or benefit directly most of the country, yet thousands of acres of countryside, trees, hedgerows will be ripped up and will never be replaced. Properties, homes, businesses, bridges, roads etc. will be demolished and owners will not be fully compensated. The project will inevitably overrun by many years, be significantly over budget, will be presented with technical hurdles which will not have been predicted or resolved satisfactorily. Most travellers who will used HS2 will still have to travel to the East Midlands hub, which could be a considerable journey adding time and cost to the HS2 journey. So will it actually save any time in the long run for the total journey? How are links from the East Midlands hub to the major cities of the East Midlands to be improved or developed? The question remains as to how much the journeys on HS2 will actually cost? It's not even been discussed. The cost will be astronomical, and out of reach of many people.
As a daily user of local trains, the East Midlands trains needs a major upgrade. The carriages and engines are old and for some stations, the service is infrequent. The Govt announced this year that it would not electrify the East Midlands railway line. This is a disgrace. It is also proposed that the current service from Nottingham to London will be reduced. In this day and age £50-60bn could be spent in much more beneficial areas, other beneficial infrastructure project upgrades improving existing infrastructure, house building which we are desperate for, health, leisure education facilities. All these will improve the lives of many and provide thousands of jobs in a more beneficial way.
Justification for the project in terms of costs vs benefits in a period of financial austerity, the huge environmental disruption to our local nature reserve and loss of footpaths , access etc., disruption to many peoples' established ways of life, pollution, traffic congestion are all reasons to stop this project.
"
11"My main concerns are as follows:

Can they explain why they are planning a 4000 car park on one level. It is a waste.
Of space; will increase water run off and the potential of flooding.
A multi story with a green roof would be a better option.

Is the closure and subsequent demolition of the Greenwood centre necessary? It is a well used local amenity. What plans are they making to provide an interim facility for the local community.

The green belt will be decimated in the area where they are planning to put construction facilities. What are the plans to compensate for loss of habitat and community well being.

The issue of on road parking in the local area is considerable. Cars will be parked on the road to avoid parking charges. The roads in the area cannot sustain increased traffic and parking in volume or safety.

What measures are being taken to reduce the pressure on local roads in the Long Eaton area."
12The impact assessment for noise / light and vibration is only estimated for HS2 trains once commissioned- This information is mostly meaningless as we know 2/3rds of trains will be Network Rail local trains which are not included and assessed in your consultation.
The Toton and Chilwell Neighbourhood Forum has wanted to work constructively with HS2. Initial contacts have been made and a couple of initial meetings, but nothing of real substance. To provide useful and constructive ideas about the station and how it should be designed and what mitigation the local community at Toton and the wider area needs.

The documents relevant to the Forum Area are:

EQIA Map Book :https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/747725/HS2_Phase_2b_Working_Draft_EQIA_map_book.pdf

EQIA Report: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/745314/HS2_Phase_2b_Working_Draft_EQIA_Equality_Impact_Assessment_Report.pdf

Non-Technical Summary: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/non-technical-summary-for-the-hs2-phase-2b-working-draft-environmental-statement

Community Area Report Toton https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/745213/HS2_Phase_2b_WDES_Volume_2_LA05_Radcliffe-on-Soar_to_Long_Eaton.pdf

Community Area Map Book Toton: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/746978/HS2_Phase_2b_WDES_Volume_2_LA05_Ratcliffe-on-Soar_to_Long_Eaton_map_book.pdf

Volume 3 Route-Wide Effects: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/746554/HS2_Phase_2b_Working_Draft_ES_Volume_3_Route-wide_effects.pdf

Volume 4: Off Route Effects: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/745090/HS2_Phase_2b_Working_Draft_ES_Volume_4_Off-route_effects.pdf

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