LAST year’s decision to scrap the M4 Relief Road south of Newport means alternative measures need to be pursued.

It’s why the commission set up following the controversial rejection have invited the public to share their thoughts.

Lord Burns, chairman of the South East Wales Traffic Commission, said: "Later this year, we will put forward a package of measures designed to make a noticeable change for those who live and work within the communities of South East Wales, especially Newport.

"To achieve this, we need your local knowledge and insight to best understand and select the most appropriate transport options for the city and the region.”

You can submit your ideas through the commission’s website.

Congestion on the M4 in Newport is a daily occurrence for many commuters and, inevitably, sparks heated debate.

This is what our readers suggested in the comments section and on social media.

The overwhelming majority called for an M4 Relief Road to be built, but given that First Minister Mark Drakeford ruled that out - citing environmental concerns and the projected cost - we have included alternative ideas.

Improving public transport

One person wrote: “Sort the buses out for all the surrounding areas into and out of Newport.

“Make it not worth taking the car and parking as the buses are affordable, frequent and reliable.”

Another added: “Let’s have regular and clean buses running from 5.30 in the morning until 11.00 pm at night.

“We're supposed to be a city but if we take a train to London, Manchester, Birmingham etc. early in the day and come back during the evening we are forced to spend money on taxis each way.”

Another said: “One car for every person with a growing population is not sustainable no matter how many roads you build.

“People need to get out of their cars and use another form of transport, walking, cycling or public transport.

“There is clear over-reliance and addiction to the car.

“If people must travel in cars I think incentives should be offered for 'car sharing' - one person per car is a waste of resources on multiple levels and only adds to any traffic problems.

“Public transport needs to be improved with added railway station platforms and safer and cleaner busses.”

Another said public transport should be subsidised.

Magor, Llanwern and Caerleon railway stations should be “re-opened”, wrote another.


Something a little bit different?

One person suggested a monorail.

They wrote: “As we all know, the busy commute problem can be wrapped into a zone between Bristol Temple Mead and Cardiff.

“Build a continuous loop monorail between those two cities, with trains running at 10-minute gaps (akin to London Underground timings).

“Each train to hold minimum 250 people and make the fare half of the cost to drive by car.

“At the moment, a train ticket from Severn Tunnel to Bristol is £9.20 - I can drive this in my single occupancy car for £4.00. That's why the roads are clogged.”

Expanding the Brynglas Tunnels

One person wrote: “Alternatively, compulsory purchase the 16 houses and hotel above the Brynglas Tunnels, open it up to a culvert and build three lanes each way right through the area.


Another added: “Widen the tunnels to three lanes, it's not rocket science.

“Much cheaper and more sustainable than another ridiculous bypass or relief road.”

But another opposed this argument, writing: “Widening the tunnels, boring a third tunnel or making a cutting were dismissed in the options study a decade ago and again in the public enquiry.

“Mostly, obviously, because the current traffic would have nowhere to go during the years of construction.”

Change the speed restrictions

One person wrote: “Get rid of the speed restrictions that go from 70-to-50-to-40 and sometimes 30mph and leave it at 50mph. It runs so much smoother.”

While another suggested removing the restrictions completely.

“Take restrictions off the motorway and let it be a motorway. 70mph.”

And someone else added: “Remove the speed limits from Magor and let the traffic keep moving.”

Slow down house building

One person wrote: “Stop the huge number of housing developments that are for commuters.

“Chepstow is gridlocked with commuters accessing the M48 and onwards.

“Planning Policy Wales states planning must consider infrastructure amongst other considerations.”


Cycle instead

One pensioner wrote: “I never drive in and out of Newport.

“I live five miles away but cycle in and out.

“Admittedly I risk my life occasionally with the absence of dedicated cycle tracks which exist everywhere in Europe, but hey ho.

“Before anyone raises objections to this, it's not a solution I know, but it is one car less on the road and helps to alleviate the strain on the roads.

“I feel I'm doing my bit. I'm also a pensioner and have had two heart procedures.

“I have the approach 'use it or lose it'. I cycle past many drivers who I feel could benefit from a different approach.”