You don't really mean 'any' increase in traffic . . .

Far too often we read highway authority comments suggesting that 'any increase in traffic would have an unacceptable impact on highway safety'. Really? Surely one additional vehicle per decade would be acceptable, whereas one additional vehicle per minute may not. In which case, there must be a threshold above which the increase becomes unacceptable. We recently provided evidence for a successful planning appeal in Bath [APP/F0114/W/19/3222626] where the highway authority took exactly this stance. We tried to explore where this threshold might lie but they stuck to their 'any increase' argument. The Inspector, however, considered NPPF paras 108 and 109 and concluded that whereas there would indeed be a small increase in traffic, there was no evidence that that increase would be so significant as to create additional harm to highway safety. This was precisely the point we had been making throughout the planning determination period. It was a minor application but this principle can apply to any similar objection where the highway authority apply a simplistic 'any increase' argument.

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