Letter: Road chaos will be our lot

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THE grandiose proposals and articles in the press over the last few months for the redevelopment of Eastern Newhaven Harbour, railway area/new housing etc, etc, gives the impression that should such schemes be adopted 100s of new jobs and a variety of new housing and businesses will halt the decline of Newhaven.

However, the euphoria being peddled by developers and local authorities needs closer examination of the wider picture, eg, how will the existing road network (A259 and A26) be improved to accommodate this planned redevelopment and expansion. Not forgetting how the existing roads will cope with 60/70 vehicle movements per day of recycling waste to the incinerator when it becomes fully operational.

Since moving to Seaford with my family in 1965 I have witnessed only one major highway improvement, namely the bridge over the railway along the A259 at Newhaven. The Newhaven to Brighton 259 is a disgrace. Seaford’s population has grown during the 50 years from 13,000 to 26,000 plus, likewise Newhaven’s population has grown significantly as well. East-West traffic movements along the A259 have increased to such an extent that during Monday to Friday rush hours the queues of traffic and associated congestion and air pollution is reaching unacceptable levels.

I have on several occasions attended consultative meetings to view building plans and development proposals and met a variety of officers from ESCC/LDS etc. However at no time has anyone shown me, or explained, the new highway and associated road infrastructure plans to cope with the demand. Will the poor motorist of the future using the A259/A26 have to suffer yet again, due to the lack of highway planning by the authorities? Do we have to wait for a similar debacle to occur, as when the last Government decided to extend the A27 from Lewes to span the railway but constructed only two lanes westward and one lane eastward. Three lanes into one at the Southerham Roundabout has resulted in major traffic congestion and tailbacks every Monday to Friday evening.

Can someone in authority demonstrate and enlighten the public to reassure us that we are going to witness a great leap forward not into highway chaos and increasing environmental damage.

John Burns, Seaford