LETTER: Traffic impact from farm plan

Are your readers aware of the implications for increased traffic in the West of Chichester from building the development at Whitehouse Farm?

This development of eventually 1,600 houses is in the Chichester District (CDC) Local Plan and we have to accept that it is likely to be built. However, a major concern is the impact of increased traffic from these houses, the 6 hectares of industrial units, a new school and community hub on the already overloaded road network.

This could be considerably reduced by the building of the Southern Access road at an early stage.

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The CDC planning committee passed by the narrowest of majorities, the Masterplan with an amendment from the councillor from Tangmere to build the Southern Access Road before the 751st house ie. at the beginning of phase 2.

The current planned route for Phase 1 is for all the construction traffic of heavy plant, lorries and vans, to enter the site through a new roundabout on the very busy Funtington Road (B2178) having come from the A27 via Orchard Street, The Northgate Gyratory and St Paul’s Road. This will not be a temporary inconvenience as it is most likely to continue until 2026.

A Southern Access should join the Cathedral Way Roundabout (by the College Car park) near the A27 – NOT Westgate as in the local plan. Joining Westgate would cause severe congestion and tailbacks at the Westgate/Sherborne Road roundabout, misery for existing local residents and danger to the pupils from Bishop Luffa School – it could use the existing WSCC Highways Department Approved Plan (9272/62/1 1989) as reviewed and retained in 2013.

This would give an immediate route for all the construction traffic avoiding existing residential areas and congested roads. As the building progresses it would allow the residents quick access to the A27 without traversing the city centre.

There are letters on the CDC’s planning website (enter 14/04301/OUT in the search box) from the Chichester City Council, Chichester Society and residents’ associations, including Westgate, Parklands and Orchard Street, among others, supporting the building of the Southern Access at the beginning of phase 1.

The outline planning permission will be considered by the planning committee within the near future and we are requesting that the committee make it a condition that the Southern Access Road is built before the main building starts.

Please will you encourage your readers to lobby their district councilors and support a campaign to build the Southern Access Road to the White House Farm development at an early stage.

Richard Brownfield

Chair, Westgate Residents Association