Camp Hill line commuter service again under threat

The Bordesley Chords are once more under threat from a planning application for  housing and office development.  The chords are required to be constructed in order that the Camp Hill passenger service from Kings Norton to Birmingham can be upgraded from the initial two trains an hour to a full commuter line once it reopens to passenger services in 2021



Please see my blog of 1st March when the implications of the planning application first became known.

These are my latest comments:

Re: Planning Application 2018/09467/PA, 193 Camp Hill, Highgate, Birmingham, B12 0JJ

“I appreciate that the applicant has made some alterations to the plans in order to try to allow construction of South West Bordesley Chord at a future date. However,I am aware that the West Midlands Rail Executive (WMRE) and Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) have expressed their objection to the revised plans on the grounds that the detailed plans for the chords cannot be drawn up before this application is decided. If built, the development envisaged in these plans is likely to affect both the constructability of these chords and also lead to objections from the residents and businesses that the development will introduce into the land adjoining the railway.

The Moseley community has been campaigning for the reopening of the Camphill Railway Line for passenger traffic for well over 40 years. Plans and funds are now in place for that to happen. However, the reopening is being achieved on the original lines that take the Camphill service round by St Andrew’s Junction to New Street Station. Because of the lack of capacity at New Street all that can be offered is a half-hourly service. The only way for the large number of people living within walking distance of the Hazelwell, Kings Heath and Moseley Stations to be offered a more frequent rail connection is by building chords at Bordesley so as to take the Camphill Line into Moor Street Station. It would be a very big blow for Balsall Heath, Stirchley, Kings Heath and Moseley residents if this development prevented the chords being built and the line becoming a full commuter service.  The number 50 bus service is already over capacity and the air pollution on the A435 route into city is a cause for concern to many residents.  The way we travel needs to be radically changed and this rail improvement is of paramount importance in achieving those changes.   
I therefore urge that Planning Committee  refuse this application – or require it to be reduced to the point where WMRE and TfWM are content that it will not prevent the future construction of railway chords at Bordesley”.
Izzy Knowles
Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Birmingham Hall Green

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