Highways England is currently running a public exhibition showing options to improve the A27 east from Lewes to Polegate. £75 million is earmarked for this project and it’s ring fenced so can’t be ‘held over’ for any future improvements to the road.
Only one option shows a ‘bypass’ between the Alciston junction and Middle Farm but this would only be a single carriageway and would only be 1.8 miles long so of no use whatsoever.
Almost all other options are to improve cycle paths, pedestrian crossings and junctions. One option at Wilmington even has an underpass for pedestrians and horses complete with mounting and dismounting blocks at each end!
As I have written many times before, the scale of new housing development planned in our area means the A27 must be dualled without delay to cope with the extra traffic these homes will engender.
The road is already at a standstill during rush hours and heavily congested outside these times. What on earth is the point of chucking £75 million down the drain now by tweaking small areas of the road when, in five or 10 years time when the A27 is completely blocked all day every day, the powers that be finally realise they must dual the road.
How much better to do the work now so that the road is ready by the time all these thousands of houses are actually built and inhabited.
But, I suppose, that would take a bit of forward thinking by Highways England and, as things stand at the moment, forward thinking doesn’t seem to be their strong suit.
Cllr Wendy Alexander
Old Drive, Polegate
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