This live event has finished
- The inquiry got under way at 10am this morning.
- It is expected to last around eight days, taking place at the Royal National College for the Blind in Hereford.
- It follows objection to compulsory purchase orders issued by Herefordshire Council in relation to the proposed city-centre link road.
Thanks for following today's live blog.
The inquiry will continue from 9.30am tomorrow.
A "large" number of alternatives were looked at, Mr Oakley says.
Schemes looked at were those that that would significantly reduce traffic, those that would improve connectivity between Hereford's "historic core" and ESG area and that would improve access to the site.
Mr Oakley says there are many things he would like to do as a professional but it is a matter of "how much you bite off in one element".
He adds that disruption while the link road is built would be significantly less than that taking place on Newmarket Street.
Coun Bowen asks whether it would not be a "better, more comprehensive" scheme if transport interchange had been included from the beginning.
Councillor Sebastien Bowen asks whether a transport interchanged is guaranteed.
Mr Oakley says this is not part of the scheme but is something that would be facilitated by it in the future.
He adds it is the "best means" of meeting the needs of the ESG area and the city as a whole.
The link road evolved following detailed evaluation of a number of alternatives and is considered the "optimal solution" he says.
Access to some areas of the ESG development site is "currently inadequate", he says.
Transport manager Chris Oakley is now outlining the transport benefits of the scheme.
There is a "compelling case" in the public interest for the scheme, he adds.
The public benefits are widely seen in terms of economic, social and environmental factors.
The scheme provides for economic benefits, makes good use of underused land and has social benefits in terms of necessary housing - particularly affordable housing - Dr Nicholson adds.
Alternative route would not achieve the aims of the link road.
Proposals for an alternative route would not be suitable, Dr Nicholson says.
Tim Jones says the council is very "confident" it will have reached an agreement with Royal Mail before the end of the inquiry.
The inquiry has paused for a short break.
This afternoon, Dr David Nicholson is giving an overview of the scheme.
Tim Jones also made his opening statement for Herefordshire Council earlier today.
The primary objective of the link road, he said, was to progress the regeneration of an "underused" part of central Hereford, currently dominated by "low-value" and often "unsightly land-uses".
Other benefits would include reducing traffic on Newmarket Street and Blueschool Street (A438) and improving pedestrian connectivity
Earlier today, planning inspector Ava Wood made a visit to the site of the proposed road.
Those statements have to explain the council's case for them and the reasons for the making of the orders and were served on January 9 2014.
The council’s Statements of Case were served upon the objectors and both secretaries of state on January 9 2014.
As a result, the council had to prepare and serve upon each objector - and the Secretary of State for Transport and the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government - a statement of case for each order.
Orders were issued five months later but to strong opposition.
In March last year, the council's cabinet backed the use of compulsory purchase powers to end the apparent stalemate.
It is the culmination of years of drawn-out negotiation between the council landowners and businesses along the link road’s route.
The inquiry is one of the biggest ever conducted in the county and will look into a proposed cross-city route running between Commercial Road and Edgar Street.