An announcement of the Preferred Route as 5A was made on 11 May 2018. It will be fought every step of the way.
The South Downs National Park Authority met on 24 May and decided to challenge Highways England's decision by Judicial Review, after hearing widespread support for a challenge from the National Park community. Their 3-minute speeches against 5A can be heard on this link. (The first speech relates to A27 east of Lewes but also contains points, eg about the importance of the setting of the Park, relevant to 5A.)
- We will fight the Statutory Consultation.
- We will fight the Development Consent Order.
- We will object to the Planning Inspectorate.
- We will appeal to the public.
- We will object to the Secretary of State.
But long before we have got there Highways England will, we believe, be forced to recognize that 5A would cost way over the £250M budget. Alan Feist has said, "if that happens, we are in uncharted territory" - in other words back to the drawing board, which of course is where the National Park Authority has told them they need to go now anyway.
So what's the Alternative?
have asked for the New Purple Route to be considered instead.
This solution would free up the blockages and stop the tailbacks. It can do this without taking business away from Arundel and without wrecking the National Park and Arun Valley countryside, or destroying tranquil ancient village landscapes. And the cost of this Route would be less than half that of Option 5A.
Click here to read about it and see plans: www.arundela27forum.org.uk .
This route was excluded from the 2017 Public Consultation because the wording for Arundel, in Highways England's remit from the Department of Transport, referred to 'dual carriageway'. But that brief was itself illegitimate and challengeable for two reasons:
- It failed the test that all government bodies must 'have regard to' the National Park. (Note that the South Downs Society, being the local National Park Society, is a member of the Arundel A27 Forum.)
- The dual-solutions-only limitation was unfair and irrational because no such limitation to Highways England's remit was made in the case of Worthing, which has greater problems with delays than Arundel.