LETTER: Housing plan must be ‘honest’

The Police Station five-storey development plans (see last week’s Herald) seem to be a bit of a con.

The ‘parking survey’ was done overnight, i.e. with no account of the parking needs of the sorting-office postal workers (who start too early to use public transport), nor commuters.

They didn’t acknowledge that local shoppers need to park. The out-of-town supermarkets will reap rewards, but not our already-struggling local businesses.

They appear to think that providing cycle storage will stop people buying cars (as if!). There is no provision for extra cycle lanes, nor acknowledgment that the extra traffic generated by 50 households could put people off cycling.

They predict that 50 households will own 26 cars, even though the ‘East Sussex Parking Calculator’ predicts a parking demand of 50 vehicles.

They say 58 per cent of local ‘residents’ (not ‘households’, so presumably including children and excluding students) do not own a car. Most households in my street have two cars (and the Government shows no sign of sorting out Southern Rail).

They say that the development ‘would not have a material impact on the operation or safety of the local highway network [or] local transport services’. With no evidence.

They admit that their Transport Assessment is ‘in support’ of the planning application in order ‘to demonstrate the acceptability of the proposal’, i.e. without an attempt at balance.

There also appears to be discrimination against disabled people. No parking is provided for blue badge holders.

They appear to think that the one local disabled space without time limits will be adequate, not taking into account that it’s usually occupied by other residents or shoppers.

If this plan goes through, the developers of the Court House site will probably feel that they too don’t have to make space for parking.

Eastbourne needs more housing for sure, and it’s good that 50 more families will be housed. But the plan must be presented honestly (and it must not damage our local businesses).

Alexandra Hough

Old Orchard Road,