Residents who use the A27 between Polegate and Lewes have been assured that £75m would be spent improving the road, whether a second runway is built at Gatwick or not.
The Airports Commission has been carrying out a consultation into building a new runway at Gatwick Airport.
This was the message this week from Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin, who met with a delegation from the villages near the trunk road and Lewes MP Norman Baker.
The delegation included district councillor Charles Peck, Selmeston parish Chairman David Quysner and Glynde parish councillor Johnny Denis.
The delegation asked for near-term measures to improve traffic flow, safety and access to the existing road, with particular focus on Wilmington crossroads, Selmeston and Firle.
They were told by the Transport Secretary and the Highways Agency representatives there was “a high degree of overlap” between what the local representatives were proposing and what they themselves had in mind.
It is really encouraging that we now have a commitment from Highways England to consult with local communities on the measures that need to be taken.David Quysner
Mr Baker said, “This was a good meeting, and useful to confirm that the £75m is there without any Gatwick strings.
“It was also good to hear that the Department for Transport is thinking along the same lines as those elected within my constituency, rather than the siren voices of those who live outside it and fail to understand the local issues.”
David Quysner, speaking on behalf of the parishes, added, “It is really encouraging that we now have a commitment from Highways England to consult with local communities on the measures that need to be taken.”
Bypasses at Selmeston and Wilmington, a new link road at Folkington and a dual carriageway are just some of the options being looked at by the Department of Transport for the A27 between Lewes and Polegate.
It released the results of its A27 Corridor Feasibility Study daily traffic flows on the A27 between Lewes and Polegate was 11,400. A single carriageway is epected to take up to 13,000 vehicles, so this section is already close to capacity.
It said congestion was a problem between Lewes and Polegate because of a reduction from dual to single carriageway, which resulted in increased journey times and and low traffic speeds. However the route passes through special areas of conservation, sites of special scientific interest, nature reserves and protection areas. The area is also set to experience significant growth with 60,000 homes and business development.