A BUSINESSMAN who has worked in Port Talbot for 26 years has said he wants junction 41 of the M4 closed.
Jonathan Knight, who lives in Bridgend, has travelled the M4 between the two towns most days during that time — and said persistent accidents and delays are why he thinks the westbound onslip and eastbound offslip should be shut off.
More than 20,000 people signed a petition against Welsh Government proposals to close the westbound on-slip and eastbound off-slip roads at junction 41 from August.
But earlier this month, minister Edwina Hart overturned the full trial closure — and said only the westbound junction would close during peak times for the trial.
But Mr Knight said he believes the original plan should go ahead, to avoid long delays and frequent accidents.
He said: "(There is) huge difficulty for emergency vehicle access due to volume of traffic and narrow emergency lanes."
Mr Knight added: "Those opposing closure of junction 41 demonstrate, in my view, disregard for the wider community that use the M4 and suffer from the delays and accidents caused by this flawed junction design."
"Port Talbot is not a shopping destination in the way Swansea or McArthur Glen is.
"Few people from Swansea, Bridgend or Cardiff set out for a day's shopping in Port Talbot and the very few that may aren't going to be put off by the closure.
"Whichever way you look at it, the economy of Port Talbot is not going to be affected significantly by the closure."
He said claims of greater pollution in the town centre, due to increased traffic, was an argument that could be dealt with easily, adding: "Station Road is the town centre and that is completely unaffected by the closure.
"The alternative route plan designates Harbour Way and Heilbronn Way as the main traffic thoroughfares.
"Furthermore, with a faster flowing M4, there will be less pollutants on the elevated carriageway. Move them faster and there will be less pollution."
Finally, he said a new £7 million bridge in Baglan would redirect traffic away from Sunnycroft roundabout, eliminating problems there.