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Last Updated: Wednesday, 8 December 2004, 09:31 GMT
Have your say: Transport changes
Road and air services
Road and air services are set to change over the next 15 years
Plans for a 14-mile relief road at the M4 at Newport and improved air links between north and south have been announced as part of the assembly government's 15-year transport plan.

The new road, between junctions 23 and 29, is expected to cost at least 350m and could become Britain's second toll motorway.

Work on the road, which would bypass the Brynglas Tunnels and be routed through the former Llanwern steelmaking site, could start in the next five years.

And proposals for a twice-daily air service between north and south Wales has also been put forward.

Do you think the new road and the air services are a good idea? Would you use either? Or could the money be better spent elsewhere?

This Have Your Say is now closed. A selection of your comments appear below.


I thought Wales had a legal duty to deliver sustainable development. This is a pretty clear example of how shallow and short term sustainability can be in British and Welsh policy. Air travel is a hugely polluting way to get around and the environment bares all the costs, there is not even tax on air fuel. In the short term it means cheap flights, in the long run, who knows what climate change has in store? As for more roads, since when has more roads really ever reduced traffic? Surely any new investment should move away from these choices.
Sam Turton, Aberystwyth, Wales

I wonder what the good money I pay for road tax actually pays for. I wont be using any new toll road running parallel to the original road just for snobbery reasons. Also if the original road is substandard (ie too costly to widen tunnel) why cant we also use the first bridge for free!
azem.org, Cardiff

As an aviation enthusiast, and living near an RAF station, I will find it good to have a different form of transport in our country, it will settle our differences.
Aron Davies, Holyhead, Anglesey

The toll road will be there as an alternative to the existing M4. If people don't want to pay this toll - use the old M4!!! I'm sure the people who are fed up with a journey from Magor to Cardiff taking over an hour at peak times will be happy to spend an extra couple of quid to get home earlier!
Richard Shelton, Blackwood, Wales

This amount of money and pollution is obscene. How much cash would it take to find out where everyone is going?? To set up vehicle share schemes, to electrify rail services, to build new rail infrastructure. There is absolutely no original thinking taking place. Gov't is meant to lead NOT follow??!!
Paul Wheatcroft, Bristol

We start sending AMs from North Wales to Cardiff and all of a sudden an air link between Holyhead and Cardiff is deemed so essential that it will have to be subsidised by the tax-payer. Pure coincidence of course!
W.Becket, Llanberis, Wales

Why should taxpayer's money be wasted on an air service to move councillors and AMs around? Just who else will use it? The fares unless they are the same as a bus ticket will stop any one form even thinking about it. As for Valley airport, any one asked the RAF about what they think? Fast moving military training aircraft mixing in with passenger stuff, recipe for what?
Andy Jack, St.Davids, Wales

What about roads in mid/north Wales? The only motorway in Wales is the M4. Villages in mid/north Wales have been waiting over 30 years for by-passes. Please look north of the heads of the valleys
Stan Williams, Wrexham

We already pay more than enough road and petrol tax. If Beeching hadn't been allowed to close railways to suit a pro-road agenda then we would still have a network to improve and enhance. The earthworks of abandoned strategic rail routes are still there for re-use and the realities of Peak Oil and consequent price rises mean that private motoring will shortly become horrendously expensive. If politicians are in any doubt they should go to Switzerland and see how these things are managed. An alternative is to get HGV's to park up in holding areas between 0800-1000 and 1600-1800 in the South wales M4 corridor. These measures are already in use on the Continent. Lets try a few things out before we blow 350m of yours and my money on a cute little stealth tax scheme.
Phil, Newport, Wales

We start sending AMs from North Wales to Cardiff and all of a sudden an air link between Holyhead and Cardiff is deemed so essential that it will have to be subsidised by the tax-payer. Pure coincidence of course!
W.Becket, Llanberis, Wales

What Wales really needs is a motorway linking north and south wales. This should run from the M53 near Chester south via Wrexham, Welshpool and Abergavenny to join the M4 near Newport. It would provide massive boost for business and tourism in mid Wales, and make Wales into one country not two. By also taking traffic from the M5 and M6 it would reduce congestion on those motorways.
Chris Ward, Wales

I'm in Zurich Airport at the moment, eagerly anticipating the two hour drive home from Manchester later today. The priority for air links from North West Wales would have to be to the major hubs like Manchester or even Birmingham rather than the limited services available out of Cardiff. We are part of Europe after all.
Peter, Anglesey

I welcome the news about the relief road around the Brynglas Tunnels but I suppose during the peak summer months we will have to queue twice, once at the bridge and again at the toll road. The recent truckers road show boasted that 94% of Britains freight went by truck, it is time that the railways were improved to move more freight. As to the air services why not use float planes as they do in Canada, people could commute almost to the city centres then by using the available water ways.
Robbie, Carmarthen

The air link will be too expensive. At an 'affordable Fare' two flights a day with an ATR 72 full in both directions will not even pay for the upkeep of the aircraft's fixed and variable costs. If the tickets are priced correctly (no subsidy) then people would not use the service as it would be too expensive -- 'Stall and Crash' The distance is too short. The money would be better spent elswhere. Better rail services for example. As for the M4 it will take more than a link road to sort that mess out, why should we pay agin for it's use with tolls???
Leighton, Caerphilly, S,Wales

Well, when I return home I already go around the SSC bridge because I object to the extortionate tolls. This just gives me a another set of booths to go round, probably using that nice, shiny new road across the heads of the valleys. But it's wrong to tax the people and economy of South Wales for simply living "the wrong side of the Severn".
Ian H, The Other Side of Offa's Dyke

As an Englishman abroad, I am sure Wales would be a much more united country if there was a motorway running from north to south as there is in England and up into Scotland. You have North and South which are separated by a sparsely populated no man's land, linked by twisty roads full of tractors and caravans. North, South and Mid Wales see themselves as seperate in all ways except in not liking the english very much.
The air link is great news for businessmen who can offset their air expenses and subsequent transport to and from Cardiff and to and from RAF Valley. However it is not really going to make a North Wales family more likely to go to Cardiff or someone from the South Wales valleys go up to Snowdonia if they are stranded at the other end without their car. From the North a trip into England and likewise from the South is more likely to be taken for leisure than a North to South Wales trip.

The proposed M4 relief road will only allow motorists to reach the next traffic jam a few minutes quicker than at present!
Paul Harley, Newport, Wales

OK so the road may reduce congestion but imagine the difference 350 million pounds could make to improving public transport. This would then actually give motorists a viable option to using their cars!
Andrew Rowlands, Cardiff

The only way a toll would work on the bypass is if they balanced that with a toll on the existing route, otherwise most motorists would stick with the Brynglas tunnels to avoid paying, with no real improvement in the congestion. Is such an additional toll a part of the plan they haven't told us about yet?
Chris W, Barry, UK

Both stupid ideas. The assembly would do well to consult Cardiff University's Traffic experts who enjoy a global reputation. A toll route would be a white elephant whilst the air link is not the solution. Build a dual carriage way instead and open up the interior properly.
Alex Banks, Aylesbury, UK

People still seem to have not learned a very important lesson in transportation. Building roads does not ease congestion, it increases it.
Every thinking transport engineer knows that when a new road is built it will just encourage more people to drive on it until it is full. There are endless examples: London's M25, Glasgow's M8/M74, the M6, many British cities and endless American ones. Do we really need more proof?
We should take a hit from the fact that Los Angeles, the car capital of the world, now hardly ever builds roads and concentrates much more on public transport provision.
Daniel Cross, Edinburgh, UK

Maybe some lane discipline on the two-lane stretch of the M4 could prevent the need for an additional road?
Peter Davies, Chepstow

Travel across Wales is rubbish compared to England - it's outrageous that it takes longer to get from South Wales to North Wales than it does to get to Manchester. Road and rail were built to link Ireland with England. Now at least the Assembly has an overview that's some use to this little country, but not the money - it still hasn't been able to find all the 300m needed to finish the Heads of the Valleys road - and look at what a difference the A55 made to the North!
I will not use the M4 toll road unless the Severn Bridge tolls are abolished - two tolls in a row is not acceptable. The new Newport relief road is very good, although busy already.
David, Cardifff

What - bridge and motorway tolls - surely the most expensive short journeys in the UK. Exemptions for locals? I very much doubt it!
Peter Davies, Chepstow

The proposed M4 relief road will only allow motorists to reach the next traffic jam a few minutes quicker than at present! How will it fit in with any Severn Barrage, which will presumably have the "Third Severn Crossing" running across it?
Paul Harley, Newport, Wales

Both these improvements will be fantastic in terms of opening up Wales even more for business and other visitors. It will also enable local people to communicate between north and south - revisiting old connections for example.
Judith Lowe, London, England

I love Anglesey and used to live and work there. An air link to Valley, or better Mona, is a great idea from an economic development point of view, but why with Swansea, another relatively depressed area? Far better link with Birmingham or London and attract Ryanair etc as did Newquay in Cornwall. Anglesey must play to its strengths and attract high spending toursists and some clean industry, not assembly bureaucrats wanting to get home in the evening. Although good news economically, can we encourage the politicians not to use the terms "sustainable" and "air transport" in the same sentence. There is no better way to pump greenhouse gasses into the upper atmosphere than with jet aircraft.
Patrick Franklin, Beaulieu, Hants

Given that there are two major bottlenecks on the roads, both in Newport and again on the M5 at Avonmouth, hasn't it ever occurred to anyone the option of a car ferry servicing south Wales with the south west? The decrease in travelling time will be a boon for local businesses and tourism alike on both sides of the Bristol Channel.
James Robinson, Swansea

I am totally opposed to the relief road. Why does the environment always have to suffer for "progress". There must be a better option.
Alison Osment, Welsh living in USA

Would it not have made more sense or the Welsh Assembly to have intested money into improving Swansea Airport. Commuters could then have flown instead of driving down the M4
Steve, Swansea

So much for the problem of climate change and excessive burning of fossil fuels. Instead of adding more subsidy to the air-travel industry to set up gratuitous internal routes, why don't we buy psychiatric therapy to encourage those people who think they need to blast from one end of Wales to the other and back again in a single day to sort their life out. Say, maybe they could use the telephone for their business meetings. It's never been a problem before.
Julian Todd, Liverpool

The air link sounds like a good idea, but only if flights and waiting times are short and the prices are low. If not then it would be just as well using the train, especially for those who live in the North East of Wales. As a student in Cardiff, it is not economically viable and is too time consuming to travel home frequently, but if the air link was good enough then I would probably travel home twice as much. With flights only twice a day though and the airport being so far west in the north, it's not going to be accessible to everyone, so what we need in the long run are improved road and rail links, and that is something the Welsh Assembly Government aren't willing to commit to.
Matt Wood, St. Asaph, Wales

At last a transport strategy which tries to address the long term transport problems in South Wales. We've had to endure rubbish roads and a 3rd class rail system for far too long. The people of South Wales can at last look for relief from the stupidity of the shortsighted idiots who decided to put a 2 lane motorway between Cardiff and Newport. This transport plan is long overdue.
David Bevan, Barry UK

The priorities of the assembly are wrong-yet again. The number 1 priority should be a motorway from the M4 to Cardiff International Airport, the 2nd priority should be the Newport toll road, then the assembly should either build an expressway through mid Wales linking north and south (with other expressways going to Aberystwyth and Wrexham coming off the heart of Wales expressway) or they should invest in a relatively high speed rail line going from Swansea to Llandudno (where a huge amount of investment is needed to improve and build such a railway).
Rhodri, Cardiff

This road will destroy a wildlife haven. When will this madness end. Stop building roads and start investing in a clean, safe efficient transport system.
Lisa Riddington, Chepstow, Wales

Both these improvements will be fantastic in terms of opening up Wales even more for business and other visitors. It will also enable local people to communicate between north and south - revisiting old connections for example.
Judith Lowe, London, England

Whenever I travel between Bangor and Cardiff on business it means a 4am rise, an eight hour return train journey and a late night. Bring on the planes!
Chris Wood, Anglesey

More roads, especially through SSSIs and areas of outstanding natural beauty are certainly not the answer. Spend the money on trains and other public transport and let's get people out of their cars.
Mark, Bristol, UK

So the spare slip road, east & west, at Magor does seem to have a purpose afterall. For years I thought it strange that the original contractors had seemed to have started a junction, but then just stopped. Was this part of HM Goverments cunning plan all those years ago? If it was, why didn't they do it then?
Mr B Seaward, Cardiff

The Assembly have delivered some great achievements for Wales, but their transport strategy has always been about 25 years behind modern developments. This is not 'integrated' transport - it is addressing urgent needs by simply building more roads. Where are buses after 7pm? Why can't I travel north-south by train in under 6 hours? The Assembly needs a transport executive like Transport for London, with a "transport tsar", and deliver a proper, multi-mode transport service fit for everyone in Wales.
Paul, Penarth, Wales

Spend money on a road that links North and South Wales. It will be accessible to more people and would cut my trip time by half
John Wynn Jones, Hawarden, Flintshire

This road will destroy a wildlife haven. When will this madness end. Stop building roads and start investing in a clean, safe efficient transport system.
Lisa Riddington, Chepstow, Wales

Just how far will they go to get more money off us? It's US who has to pay for this not them well they wouldn't build it if they were paying for it now would they? I thought they were trying to get us to use public transport. I thought it was our country well LET US HAVE OUR SAY and you listen to all of us for a change INSTEAD OF DOING IT FOR YOURSELF AND YOUR NEEDS.
mrs collins, cwmbran

Every time I return to Wales, I'm struck by the almost total lack of public transport outside of the cities and utter reliance on motorways. There's a reliance on motorways as the main arteries of travel, so adding extra lanes will never solve the problem: get more trains and buses and more routes. As for flights, great: anytime I have the option to fly over congested roads in the UK, I'll take it !!
Brian, Vancouver, Canada

So why should the people in South Wales have to pay to get a motorway that isn't sub-standard? If they want to raise some revenue they should put a toll on the M25. Fat chance!
Steve, Newport

The proposed Toll on M4 will be an addition toll to the Severn Bridge toll which has a charge increase of +10 per year and as well as the road tax. Is it a revenue generation or there is a real concern of traffic conjestion?It is better to improve the public transport infrasturcture than taxing the motorist further or the Assmebly wishes to exercise the power to deter future investment in South Wales
Sam wong, Gwent

Has nobody heard of peak oil? Economic growth and growth in energy consumption is not sustainable. Any roads built now will be the biggest white elephants of the future.
Neil Gall, Edinburgh, Scotland

Spend money on a road that links North and South Wales. It will be accessible to more people and would cut my trip time by half
John Wynn Jones, Hawarden, Flintshire

The proposed new motorway to bypass the Brynglas tunnels is an excellent idea - however it will only work if the other choke point on the M4 is removed - the two lane section between junctions 30 and 32
Peter, Swansea

Having been a regular commuter to England I was always held up by the Brynglas Tunnel bottleneck. I disagree with routing the proposed road through the Gwent Levels, though something does need to be done. Why can't the M4 be widened at these bottleneck areas? As for an air service between North and South Wales - great idea. Getting to North Wales from the South is by no-means an easy task! The road and rail links will need to be improved for Cardiff airport. Better still, move the airport to the Severn estuary as per a plan that was to have been implemented by 2012.
Julian, Aberdare

The Welsh Assembly need to make a deeper analysis of the problems we have in Wales as regards transport links, make sure they are well thought out and cost effective. The toll road and appear to be curing a heart-attack with an elastoplast. It would ideal to give passengers priority at peak times on the trains but can we persuade the rail owners - in each branch of transport we require the assembly and private enterprise to get together and provide the different options/solutions.
Stuart Jones,

Yet again, lets build another TOLL ROAD is not an answer. Wheres the INTEGRATED TRAVEL PLAN (long term) which would take into account all modes of travel? As both a car driver and motorcycle rider, I see lack of forward planning in lots of knee-jerk reactions such as this. The M6 toll takes something like 4 miles off the same distance as the normal M6 and charge for it. Sounds like an instant replay. The only people to make money on this is the road-builders. Did you know that an airport-runway laying machine can re-cover 4 miles in one night - yet we have roadworks that last for years to half close roads which are then too narrow to use (M25 J13). What else do we pay our road taxes for? Dave
Dave Morgan, Slough, Berks

It's about time the Rhondda Fach got its relief road - its been given enough talk for the last 20 years, it will open the valley up and hopefully bring a booat to the "forgotten" valley. Also the Port Talbot distributor sounds interesting is this someone giving cups of tea out while waiting at Baglan West junction? That part of the M4 is stifling growth down and causing me to lose my hair!!! Also why is this all road - rail infastracture needs building to provide alternatives and a few pints on Friday nights. In the main though it does sound like someone is listening and these projects would have been delayed further had it not been for the assembly.
Matt Lloyd, Swansea

Another silly waste of money by politicians who have nothing better to think about. J29 M4 goes into two lanes until Coryton and is as busy as Newport tunnels. The air link to Cardiff airport is also a total nightmare to drive down as more and more people are vacting the city due to unaffordable house prices. Commuting to Barry from Cardiff West is almsot impossible at peak times.
Just widen the roads in the above places and get the Cardiff Eastern link built !
Richard Philp, Cardiff South Glam

The proposed new motorway to bypass the Brynglas tunnels is an excellent idea - however it will only work if the other choke point on the M4 is removed - the two lane section between junctions 30 and 32 - if this isn't removed then all that will be achieved is the replacement of one bottleneck with another. I'm not too sure if a North/South air link will succeed without improving the road and rail links to Cardiff Airport
Peter, Swansea

Tolls, tolls, tolls. Having received a letter from the Severn Bridge telling me that in 2005, the bridge toll will rise to 4.80, I feel rather annoyed at yet another toll charge. Plus the fact the Newport Council have almost finished the Southern Distributor Road. Won't the SDR become rather redundant with another major road?
Dave McWhirter, Abergavenny

Why not actually upgrade the "dual carriage way" into a proper "motorway". I bet you can't name any other capital cities that are mainly served by two lane roads?
Andrew Low, North Somerset

What about the congestion on the two lane section from the entrance to the A48M and coryton. This is always very slow
Tony Hallett, Pontypridd Wales

An expressway through the heart of Wales?!! I can hear the howls of protest already! How can anyone, let alone anyone who loves Wales, even think of such an idea for one of the most beautiful part of the UK? The answer does not lie in even more concrete highways wherever there is a naked blade of grass. But then, if Beeching hadn't slashed most of the Welsh railway network from the maps we might not have the problems we have today!
Steve, Cardiff

It seems absurd that the government are willing to spend what will be an enormous amount of money tearing up beautiful countryside to encourage driving even more! More roads = more people likely to drive = more congestion = more roads... Surely investing in and encouraging public transport and non-congesting forms of transport (cycling) should be a priority.
Dominic Eeggbeer, Cardiff

This road will go straight through the Gwent Levels - an area of natural beauty. Once again - everything is sacrificed to the car!
Tony Sudworth, Cardiff

The M4 relief road is not what we need. A far better plan would be to improve the tunnels. This would be cheaper and avoid the need to make changes to existing infrastructure. Destroying the Gwent levels to provide a toll road that few would use is to be deplored. There are better ways to win votes than this vandalism
Allen Beer, Newport

I travel regularly between London and Cardiff, and the one place on the M4 where I can almost guarantee a hold-up is Newport. Any time of the day or night, lorries or no lorries, that area is long due for the relief that free-flowing traffic will provide. However, why a toll road? We pay a plethora of taxes, many of which are ostensibly road-related. Why not use those to fund the new road.
Richard, London

Cardiff "International" Airport is a joke. Similar to Bristol, it has serious access problems. Birmingham is actually a better option. The added benefit is that Birminham serves realistic routes at realistic prices. Sorry, think again. Build a decent sized airport between Cardiff and Newport and then air travel might take off in the region.
David Nuttall, Abergavenny Wales

It would make more sense to invest in a high speed train network linking Wales' major cities. Take a lesson from France or even for that matter Holland.
Jimmy, NL

I commute from North Somerset to Cardiff each day. The most difficult part of my journey is after I get off the motorway at J29, and spend 20 minutes travelling three miles. The M4 flows fine even during rush hour, problems only occur when an accident has occurred. I would only use the toll road if I was alerted to an accident on the radio. Why not actually upgrade the "dual carriage way" into a proper "motorway". I bet you can't name any other capital cities that are mainly served by two lane roads?
Andrew Low, North Somerset

Why are all new motorways built these days toll roads? Have the government forgotten we pay road tax?
Pete M, Bristol, UK

These plans are encouraging. Britain in general has not kept pace with Europe in terms of road building, and while I agree that public transport must be improved to further entice motorists out of their vehicles, we must be realistic and pragmatic about providing improved (and more) road infrastructure for motorists who choose (and often need to use, and pay throught the nose to use) private vehicles. As someone who drives to Cardiff from London on a fairly regular basis, it is frustrating to find yourself stuck in traffic outside Newport. At least planners of this part of the motorway have the excuse that it was built a long time ago - unlike the new section of the M4 on the English side of the Severn bridge - why on earth is this two lanes?!
Christian Lamacchina,

Being a daily commuter between Cardiff and Bristol I am more than familiar with the traffic problems along the M4 from Cardiff to Newport. Although the new road is welcomed it stops short of resolving the problem. The cause of all the congestion is the bottle necks caused by limited two lane traffic. Diverting traffic from the Brynglas tunnels will only shift the problem to the two lane system between junctions 30 and 32.
Martin Welch, Cardiif

The minister wants the motorist to provide most of the cost via tolls. I thought we did already via the tax disk and fuel duty.
Derek, Brecon, Powys

I'm not sure air travel from north to south is the best plan, as it will still be a very lengthy journey to get to airports. For instance from Barmouth to Valley is two hours - I could be in Merthyr in three in the car on the current roads. Whilst I understand this decision has been made with the environment in mind, however I feel that an expressway straight through the heart of Wales might make the journey a lot quicker and far easier than flying.
Sam Roberts, Barmouth, Wales

Having heard the news today regarding plans for a new relief road between J29 and J23 I am some what indecisive as to whether this will be good or bad! I am a daily commuter from Cardiff to South Bristol where I work as an engineer. The last six months have noticeably become worst on the M4 during the morning and evening rush hours. I also currently car share with two other colleagues to spread to rising cost of travel to work. Before I started lift sharing, my monthly out goings for travelling to work was around 260 which covered fuel and bridge toll only. When this road is built it will have a huge benefit however the introduction of another toll would in my opinion be bad. I consider that I am penalised for working in England however I feel that I actually bring in spending power into Wales from England thus helping the local economy.
I think that more focus should be made on getting people to lift share as it is disturbing how many cars are on the M4 during the daily commute with only one person in side - this I find terrible.
Chris, Cardiff

Three lanes each way from Cardiff to the other side on Newport would be a better idea.
Rob Waring, Cardiff

It's all very well providing better air services between North and South Wales, but the time taken to travel to and from Cardiff International Airport may still make that unattractive.
Lyndon, Cardiff

Money would be better spent adding a slip road from Caldicot on to the M48 as Magor very congested at peak times.
Margaret Lucas, Caldicot, Monmouthshire

What a load of rubbish these plans are for a toll road between Magor and Castleton! There are several ways you can get from Newport to Cardiff already so what is the point of having to pay for the journey?. I certainly won't be paying to travel from my home in Newport to Cardiff when I can travel on the train for free!!
A twice daily air service may also be a flop unless businesses transfer to Wales. At the moment, everyone seems to be moving out of the UK and going abroad.
Greg Johnson, Newport Wales

The announcement of a new road to relieve congestion on M4 near Newport will be welcomed by most people. But the prospect that it will be tolled is alarming. Most people don't like tolls, and a tolled road will be underused. Scotland is moving in the direction of no tolls, why is Wales moving the other way?
John McGoldrick, National Alliance Against Tolls,

Why are all new motorways built these days toll roads? Have the government forgotten we pay road tax?
Pete M, Bristol, UK

It's all very well providing better air services between North and South Wales, but the time taken to travel to and from Cardiff International Airport may still make that unattractive.
Lyndon, Cardiff, Wales

I think it unlikely that a toll road adjoined to the tolls at the Second Severn Crossing would work. It would be the most expensive stretch of "Freeway" in the UK! Who could afford to use it? There is obviously a need for congestion relief on this section of the M4 as it is a lifeline to densely populated South Wales. A road from Magor, south of Newport and possibly Cardiff (to complete the Peripheral Distributor Ring-Roads of each) with improved access to the Valleys at Risca and the A470 on the existing M4 is a must. WAG need to seize the initiative to give Wales the infrastructure it needs to compete internationally.
Arron Paddock, Chichester, UK

Air services to RAF Valley don't seem very well thought out. Most of the population is in North East Wales. Passenger flights from Anglesey would be too far away for them.
Julian, Chester

I believe commercial flights from Valley will be a great success. People in NE Wales can fly to Cardiff from Liverpool. It's about time there was some investment in Anglesey.
Aled Williams, Cardiff

I used to drive from J28 to J18 everyday for work, I spent most of my time stuck in slow traffic between J28 and J24. If the relief road existed then it would have saved me lots of time.
Andrew Murray, Newport

The M4 has two lanes around the Brynglas tunnels, why don't we just ban HGVs from the outside line between 8am and 10am, problem solved. It works in Europe, and it won't cost half a billion pounds.
Gravy, Magor, Wales

What about the north east? There is an airport there. It would take as much time by air and road to the north east than to drive from Cardiff. More money to improve the A470. That what is needed. North east losing out again.
Hannah, North East

Far from spending 350million on a new relief road and encouraging even MORE cars on the road, would it not be better spent on improving public transport links between these points? Or is that too obvious?
Ross, Cardiff

It's about time the Rhondda Fach got its relief road - its been given enough talk for the last 20 years, it will open the valley up and hopefully bring a booat to the "forgotten" Valley.
Matt Lloyd, Swansea

Yet again, lets build another toll road is not an answer. Where's the integrated travel plan (long term) which would take into account all modes of travel? As both a car driver and motorcycle rider, I see lack of forward planning in lots of knee-jerk reactions such as this. The M6 toll takes something like four miles off the same distance as the normal M6 and charge for it. Sounds like an instant replay. The only people to make money on this is the road-builders. Did you know that an airport-runway laying machine can re-cover four miles in one night - yet we have roadwords that last for years to half close roads which are then too narrow to use (M25 J13). What else do we pay our road taxes for? Dave
Dave Morgan, Slough, Berks

The Welsh assembly need to make a deeper analysis of the problems we have in Wales as regards transport links, make sure they are well thought out and cost effective. The toll road and appear to be curing a heart-attack with an elastoplast. It would ideal to give passengers priority at peak times on the trains but can we persuade the rail owners - in each branch of transport we require the assembly and private enterprise to get together and provide the different options/solutions.
Stuart Jones

Having been a regular commuter to England I was always held up by the Brynglas Tunnel bottleneck. I disagree with routing the proposed road through the Gwent Levels, though something does need to be done. Why can't the M4 be widened at these bottleneck areas? As for an air service between North and South Wales - great idea. Getting to North Wales from the South is by no-means an easy task. The road and rail links will need to be improved for Cardiff airport. Better still, move the airport to the Severn estuary as per a plan that was to have been implemented by 2012.
Julian, Aberdare

Spend money on a road that links North and South Wales. It will be acessable to more people and would cut my trip time by half
John Wynn Jones, Hawarden, Flintshire

Has nobody heard of peak oil? Economic growth and growth in energy consumption is not sustainable. Any roads built now will be the biggest white elephants of the future.
Neil Gall, Edinburgh, Scotland

The proposed Toll on M4 will be an addition toll to the Severn Bridge toll as well as the road tax. Is it a revenue generation or there is a real concern of traffic conjestion?It is better to improve the public transport infrasturcture than taxing the motorist further or the Assembly wishes to exercise the power to deter future investment in South Wales
Sam Wong, Gwent

So why should the people in South Wales have to pay to get a motorway that isn't sub-standard? If they want to raise some revenue they should put a toll on the M25. Fat chance!
Steve, Newport

Every time I return to Wales, I'm struck by the almost total lack of public transport outside of the cities and utter reliance on motorways. There's a reliance on motorways as the main arteries of travel, so adding extra lanes will never solve the problem: get more trains and buses and more routes. As for flights, great: anytime I have the option to fly over congested roads in the UK, I'll take it.
Brian, Vancouver, Canada

This road will destroy a wildlife haven. When will this madness end. Stop building roads and start investing in a clean, safe efficient transport system.
Lisa Riddington, Chepstow, Wales

The Assembly have delivered some great achievements for Wales, but their transport strategy has always been about 25 years behind modern developments. This is not 'integrated' transport - it is addressing urgent needs by simply building more roads. Where are buses after 7pm? Why can't I travel north-south by train in under 6 hours? The Assembly needs a transport executive like Transport for London, with a "transport tsar", and deliver a proper, multi-mode transport service fit for everyone in Wales.
Paul, Penarth, Wales

It seems that, as usual, New Labour would rather line the pockets of their old pals The Oil Capitalists than invest in a decent (well at least useable ie. more than we have now!) national public transport infrastructure. I suppose the air link might come in handy to the few who commute North Wales to South Wales. You know, those Assembly Members. And why is the bypass not being funded from the Road Fund Tax, or the Fuel Tax?
Mark Wilkins, Cardiff, Wales

I think it's a fantastic idea. I am a small tradesman and I'm practically on my knees, desperately trying to push my way into London each week to flog my wares. Bring it on!
Daffyd Jones, Llandewi, Wales
I won't use the toll road, I'll stick to the old road and hope for the best
Mark Lewis, Cardiff

I think that anyone who has historically used the M6 and has now used the M6 toll road will confirm that they are a great idea. Its worth paying 3 to cut 45 minutes off your journey. People should stop moaning about road building and allow bigger and better ones to be built. It will cost less in the long run and reduce pollution. Sitting in a traffic jam for an hour outside Birmingham produces a lot of fumes!
Simon Baggs, London

A new road ripping through the Gwent Levels - no thanks. The two lane sections of the M4 around Newport and Cardiff should be upgraded to a proper three-lane motorway. In conjunction with this the Assembly should be working on improving rail links right across South Wales. A balanced transport policy of upgrading existing roads, railways and airport connections is what's required before Wales can grow economically.
Layton, Abertyleri

Successive governments have been unwilling to really address the challenge of transport. The UK economy is dependent on good transportation, without it, we are doomed to become a minor European player. Firstly, we need the railways to be taken back into public ownership, followed by massive long-term investment program. Secondly, toll roads are not the answer. They just add cost to both industry and the public, in a country where motoring is already too expensive. We need large, sustained, investment in our transport infrastructure, justified as an investment in the future, not for a quick payback.
David, Portsmouth, UK

Stop whinging about tolls - if you dont want to pay the toll then don't use the road...or better still catch a bus or train.
Nick Sylvester, Cardiff

We've only just got rid of the attempt to destroy the Gower for an airport. The airlink is a joke, by the time you've driven to and from the airport, been searched and waiting two hours for the plane it will be quicker to drive. Wales used to have a perfectly good North/South rail network until they closed it. More investment in fast trains, reopening the line from Swansea to Barry (via 'Cardiff' airport) is far better than a road around Newport.
Alan, Swansea

Any new roads are a plus, especially with this government. It shouldn't be tolled, though.
Chris, UK

I think an air link with North West Wales would be a fantastic boost for the economy in our part of the country we have better links with the Republic of Ireland at the moment than we do with the capital of our own country. I just hope it will encourage more businesses to move to this area we always seem to miss out to the North East of Wales.
Victoria Hughes, Holyhead, NW Wales

I commute over the Severn bridge every day to work as employment opportunities for my profession are so limited in South Wales. For this I pay an annual toll of just over 1,000 pounds. How much will I be expected to pay for the new toll road, another 1,000 PA. On top of the increases in the price of fuel just getting to/from work is getting extremely expensive! I'd love to use public transport but given this can add over an hour to my journey each way and together with several changes of train it just isn't worth considering. I won't use the toll road, I'll stick to the old road and hope for the best. Perhaps they'll impose tolls on both roads a la the first and second Severn bridges so I won't have a choice!
Mark Lewis, Cardiff

I have regular first-hand experience of the congestion around the Brynglas tunnels, but it does seem rather silly to build a separate toll road over the Gwent Levels. Motorists are already feeling pretty hard-done-by; I suspect many would be reluctant to switch to the tolled relief road. Until there is a reliable, affordable rail service which offers a fraction of the comfort and convenience that comes with car ownership, congestion problems look unlikely to decrease. Surely widening the existing M4 and spending the change on real improvements to public transport (ie. not pouring it into the Network Rail/Jarvis black hole) is the way to go?
Dave Quarrell, Cardiff & Bristol




SEE ALSO:
M4 relief road plan unveiled
07 Dec 04 |  Wales


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