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On Rospuda Valley and Augustów bypass road

I would like to describe how the Rospuda issue - a plan to build a road through primeval swamps and pretending that no other scheme was possible- is presented in Poland. First of all, the society is not aware what went wrong and why European Commission has any objections. As the majority of the media are strongly pro-governmental and unbiased coverage by independent journalists is unbelievably rare, the media are not respecting any fair and balanced view in their coverage.

The society is not at all aware that the environmental appraisal was not done at all (the document is currently being prepared by Scott Wilson, it is due in December 2007!). So, people are not aware that the law has been broken and that the investment was started before the best variant was chosen in appraisal procedure. What more, GDDKiA is strongly pushing Scott Wilson to include Rospuda variant in their appraisal (3 routes were selected for further analysis, none of which was going through Rospuda Valley and Augustów, which lies well 30- 40 km to the East from the chosen route!)

It is very probable, that GDDKiA will be trying to change the consultants for those who are likely to be maneuvered, as they want to push through a variant that goes through Białystok- the town where officials of GDDKiA regional headquarter live. Well, it also seems that the governmental plan is to use the Rospuda Valley argument to create tensions in the society and anti-ecological sympathies. People of Augustów, the town of 30 thousand inhabitants to be bypassed, are shown in TV running a crusade with crosses to the camp of the ecologists in the valley. They have an argument: the GDDKiA has not even made one traffic lights system in the town, making it nearly impossible for pedestrians to cross the road. There is only one traffic lights system on the mentioned road.

The disinvestment in the safety measures could be seen as a strategy to create local pressure for the bypass road. As by now, I have myself heard the CEO of the governmental highway authority repeating on radio, that everything was done without breaking the law. I think that he was a liar. Alas, we do not posses any media for our voice to be heard. I am a transport economist skilled in in transport investment appraisal and I can prove my skills if requested.

Posted by Adam Phoo on 00:57. Filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0

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