Build the road, cars will come

GOVERNMENT advisers first noted traffic growing far faster on new roads than projected in 1994. The so-called "M25 effect" has been highlighted by anti-road campaigners as evidence of the folly of building more capacity - because it simply fills up with traffic.

The Campaign for Better Transport said the phenomenon was well documented, claiming that analysis by the Highways Agency south of the Border showed new bypasses encouraged more people to drive and just moved traffic problems to new areas.

It said such schemes did not always take traffic away from the routes they were designed to relieve, citing new sections of the A6 near Derby and the A1 near Wetherby in Yorkshire.