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This is excellent news for Chichester, because it means the online junction issues so vital to local traffic will be addressed
It is excellent news for the National Park which would have suffered severe impacts from the proposals
And it is excellent news for Sussex - Chichester is not about to open the floodgates to a damaging 70mph expressway through route attracting much more traffic through the county
On the Highways England website Chichester page it now states that the online Chichester improvements will start by end March 2019 and finish by end March 2021. Four junctions will be improved: Fishbourne, Stockbridge, Whyke and Bognor. The Oving lights are likely to be closed; the Portfield junction is not seen as a problem like the others. Ben Kirk of Chichester Deserves Better said, "Chichester needs to get together and push for a proper job and not a watered down quick fix".
What will dropping the Chichester North Bypass mean for Arundel? Well, if the solution at Chichester is to improve flows online at 40-50mph standard, and the solution at Worthing is to improve flows nearly online at 40-50mph standard, protecting the environment against far-offline bypasses, the obvious and consistent solution for Arundel would be exactly the same. Improve flows nearly online at 40-50mph standard.
Highways England draft maps showing their six-and-a-half Options for Chichester were leaked by an anonymous individual to SpiritFM and the Chichester and Bognor Observer and Worthing Herald and revealed by them on 8th January 2016.
These maps are copied below. But first, here is a bit of important background story.
Chichester was not included in the A27 Feasibility Study because the decision had been made, not long before, that it would have online junction improvements. This seemed like a good enough reason for Highways England to schedule the Chichester scheme a year faster than the rest. There will be a 6-week consultation on the detail in spring 2016, and decision in summer 2016.
But in late 2015, Highways England revealed confidentially to local authorities that they were now going to put a Chichester North Bypass back on the table - and still rush it through on the same fast-track schedule.
Such short notice of such a major change leaves critics of this massively damaging proposal very little time to gather and assemble adequate evidence to demonstrate the severity of its impacts. Many wonder if this was a deliberate, some say disingenuous tactic. Rushing through an A27(M) Expressway around Chichester would increase the pressure on the other sections further east.
In their haste to get a Sussex A27 Expressway, which would prioritise long distance traffic over traffic movements within Sussex, off the starting blocks, even if only in piecemeal fashion, Highways England and their consultants are ignoring what has been learned in the past about induced traffic and the need for a multi modal approach. WHY?
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