Highways experts behind plans to upgrade the A27 have insisted the sole option on the table will make a ‘positive difference’.
Highways England Project manager Tom Beasley and programme manager Alan Feist spoke to the Herald as the consultation began yesterday.
They said the sole option was the only one which represented good value and came within the budget.
But they conceded more measures were likely to be required after 2014 – as discussed in consultation documents.
Mr Beasley said: “People are within their rights to lobby for other things and if that comes through we will pass that feedback through to the Department for Transport.
“What I would stress is that we have put together an option within our budget and it is showing good benefits. It will make a positive difference.”
Mr Beasley said for every pound spent, it was estimated an extra £1.53 of benefits would be generated – through things like reduced delays for commuters.
He said even by 2041, with extra traffic anticipated on the network, journey times would still be cut by three to five minutes.
Asked if there were better options, removing the budget constraint, he said: “It is complicated because if you put enough money into things you can get larger schemes and larger junctions but it is not always what is best.
“In reality the next level up is grade separation which will have significant impact on the townscape and we have not done enough analysis to say if that provides enough benefit.”
Residents who may be affected by the need to acquire land have been invited to a special consultation event.
Highways England said any requirement to purchase land was ‘mainly garden’ rather than property.