The A27 Working Group, which I sit on, have published their official response to Highways England's (HE) A27 'improvement' proposals and pulled no punches in dismissing them:
"The Working Group (WG) believes that the option put forward by HE is not fit for purpose and will not address the long standing problems associated with this stretch of the A27. The WG see no evidence that the proposed work would significantly alleviate any of the problems at the main pinch points, indeed the inclusion of yet another set of traffic lights at Durrington Hill is likely to cause even more congestion/pollution where the A27 is normally congestion free but risking extra Bost Hill rat-running.. HE have stated that the pollution levels will not significantly improve long term.
"The WG believe that HE need to take a more holistic approach to the A27. For instance the full extent of the proposed improvement works between Lancing and Worthing must be promoted and delivered directly by HE with contributions drawn from landowners and developers connected with the new residential, retail and industrial developments along this corridor. HE’s improvement scheme must therefore include the very highly congested stretch of the A27, between the Manor Roundabout and the Sussex Pad, that is currently being promoted by the new Monks Farm and Airport developers, fully understanding the requirements of existing residents, educational establishments and businesses. The wider strategy for the A27 must tie everything together. Currently the Sussex Pad traffic lights cause disproportionate delays; in the mornings the queues eastbound often extend back to Worthing.
"The WG believe that HE have not produced robust or comprehensive evidence to justify their proposals. HE have not taken into account the present traffic flows surrounding, as opposed to just on, the A27. The approach has also been insufficiently joined up across West Sussex as a whole."
A27 Working Group Recommendations
1. In the short term, take quick action to reduce delay at Grove Lodge and at Sussex Pad, using local insights and expertise.
2. Bring together experts from our Working Group, the Councils and MPs to agree the way forward,.
3. Highways England needs to answer the questions about developing a road through the Downs and National Park.
4. Develop proposals that would bring significant affordable long term benefits to local interests and to traffic which needs to travel from the Brighton & Hove by-pass to and from Chichester without disturbing our local residents and our local economy.
5. In summary, bring forward a better fuller scheme – while taking simple action now to reduce present problems.
The Working Group's full response can be read below along with an appendix which gives a summary response to the subjects on pages 21 and 22 of the consultation document and adds some things which are missing. I have also attached the minutes of the meeting.
Details of the consultation can be found here: https://www.timloughton.com/news/a27-public-consultation
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