Herald reporter Annemarie Field talks to Eastbourne Town Centre Improvement Scheme officials about the project
What was done in Phase One?
Phase One was completed in 2015 and included a new taxi rank and improvements to the entrance of Eastbourne Railway Station.
What’s happening in Terminus Road?
Before the scheme began, Terminus Road was the main hub for all eastbound and westbound buses, very congested both for buses and pedestrians and earned the nickname Diesel Alley. By moving bus stops to Gildredge Road for westbound buses and Cornfield Road for eastbound, the scheme is able to drastically reduce the number of buses using Terminus Road making it a lot less congested and improving air quality. Reducing this stretch to one lane also means we can double the width of the pavements on both sides of the road making it a more attractive spacious and pleasant environment for pedestrians. Buses will only enter the one lane from the railway station travelling towards Bankers Corner. The scheme will create a new space at Bankers Corner for cultural and social activities. High-quality paving is being introduced to the footpath and the road will be surfaced using granite blocks.
What’s happening in Gildredge Road where work is taking 62 weeks?
One lane of Gildredge Road will be designated a bus lane for buses coming into the town centre. We are currently undertaking kerbing and footway works along the southern end of Gildridge Road including pedestrian islands to aid movement of bus passengers across Gildredge Road. Top of the range bus shelters and real time passenger information boards will provide enhanced facilities for bus passengers and other street furniture will radically alter the appearance of this area of the town centre. All traffic is currently turning left into Station Parade with no direct access to Ashford Road until the raised, signalled junction is completed in spring next year.
What has been going on in Terminus Road West from Grove Road to Ashford Road?
Contractors have completed ground work, drainage and kerbing and started laying granite blocks in the road. They also started work on the pavement on the southern side of the road opposite the railway station. By the end of December vehicles will drive on the new road surface and work will begin on the opposite lane outside the station shops.
And Terminus Road East which is Ashford Road to Cornfield Road?
We are progressing on the pavements and bus lane, working on the northern side of the road and beginning laying granite road surface and paving slabs. Once a significant proportion of the new bus lane is completed, which we expect to do by the end of November, we will start running bus services along this road. New planters and lighting are also being put in.
Why is part of Cornfield Road going to be closed for eight months?
Due to the poor conditions of the road we are carrying out a full depth excavation of the carriageway here hence the need to close one lane of the road with a diversion route in place. A new bus lane is being put in for eastbound services and it will also be 20mph. There are major changes to on-street parking arrangements in Cornfield Road. Once again there will be high quality seating, tree pits, decorative lighting and top of the range bus shelters plus new trees.
Who is behind the roadworks?
East Sussex and Eastbourne councils have invested £8.2 million in the scheme.
For more on the scheme and to see a video visit www.eastbourneherald.co.uk for an interview with Highways boss Nick Bennett or drop into the contractor, Mildren hub next to Specsavers in Terminus Road.
Construction officials and contractors working on site are pictured alongside an artist’s impression of the scene.