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New transport vision for Sussex coast

18th August 2018

A new transport strategy for the Sussex Coast was presented to Eastbourne MP Stephen Lloyd by members of the South Coast Alliance for Transport and Environment.

The report – ‘A New Transport Vision for the Sussex Coast’ * was commissioned by SCATE (South Coast Alliance for Transport and Environment) and the first printed copy was presented to Stephen Lloyd MP on August 1st by Derrick Coffee of Campaign for Better Transport – East Sussex, and David Johnson, Chairman of CPRE Sussex (both members of SCATE).

Stephen Lloyd has long been committed to improving mobility and transport links in the Eastbourne area, his open minded approach to transport improvements makes him a fitting reader for this exciting new vision from SCATE. Derrick reminded him of the 17 minute journey time from Hailsham to Eastbourne town centre in the 1960s by rail: now 40 – 45 minutes or longer by bus.

The MP was keen to see an evidence led approach to traffic issues and to see politicians and community groups coming together at a wider, ‘round table’ event to build on the report’s recommendations later in the year.

The vision report is a critical response to Highways England’s plans for new costly roads only, infrastructure between Chichester and Polegate at pinch points along the A27 and A259. The report recognises recent independent research* for CPRE suggesting that new roads attract traffic and create serious unintended consequences.

The strategy proposed includes a wide range of transport and non-transport measures based on ‘best practice’ already up and running elsewhere in the UK – including in Sussex, and concludes that a new off-line A27 between Lewes and Polegate would create many more problems than it solved – including increased traffic over the wider area, including in the South Downs National Park.

Instead, the new transport strategy (NTS) offers:

  • Better, alternatives to the car for all
  • Opportunities to deliver health benefits through cleaner air and active travel
  • Strong links between land use planning and transport, reducing the need to travel
  • Support for local economies and high quality living spaces

Backed by evidence, it concludes:

  • An off-line A27 would not in the longer term relieve congestion
  • Environmental objectives in local authority plans could not be realised
  • Taken as a whole, the measures in the NTS would offer high ‘value for money’ and a prospect of significant reductions in traffic.

Campaign for Better Transport East Sussex is a member of SCATE – a network promoting INTEGRATED 21st century transport solutions for the Sussex Coast.

*The End of the Road? Challenging the road-building consensus. CPRE, 2017 is available on the CPRE website .

*A New Transport Vision for the Sussex Coast, is available on the SCATE website.