LETTER: Questions over A27 works

At the A27 Working Group (A27WG) meeting this month, Tim Loughton said that his preferred option for upgrading this stretch of the A27 through Worthing and Lancing would be grade separation – underpasses or flyovers – at major junctions.

However, this would require an increase in the allocated budget above the present £50-100million.

Stephen Cranford spoke about the recent fatal accident on the A27 near Lancing College. The data about the resultant serious traffic congestion raised the question, addressed to a senior representative from Highways England (HE), about how meaningful upgrades to the A27 could be carried out without closing the A27.

He agreed that this was indeed a vexing problem. Readers may ask themselves how an underpass could be built at the Grove Lodge Roundabout without closing the roads.

HE said that they have replied to all the questions posed at the public A27 meeting last year at the Pavillion Theatre.

However, reading their responses, there is little in the way of frank discussion.

HE believe that a relief road was unlikely to be a viable option but will properly assess this and all other reasonable alternative options. They suspect that the relief road was too long and therefore would not be value for money. It would increase air pollution due to the extra fuel used.

They believe that the consequential reduced volume of traffic on the A27 would be outweighed by the cost of construction. HE also said that ‘dualling’ of the A27 could not be ruled out.

However, at present, at-grade junction improvements (no flyover or underpass) are the only affordable option. HE have just started a project assessing the effects on traffic flow of the traffic lights at Grove Lodge roundabout.

The A27WG will be assessing the effects of the New Monks Farm project on the A27 traffic.

A member of the group was surprised that grade separation at the new roundabout was not part of their plan. Notwithstanding this, there were grave reservations about the whole project by the members – although they appreciated the pressure on the council from Parliament for new housing.

Martyn Hinchcliffe

Chairman, Offington Park Residents’ Association,

Alford Close

Worthing

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