‘More roads and homes mean no space for nature’

When writing about the excessive numbers of houses to be forced on our area by central government, Diane Shepherd, chief executive of CDC, acknowledges in her Observer column that people are not happy about the planning applications being made for what in effect are large housing estates in rural areas, writes reader Stephanie Carn, Whyke Road, Chichester.

File picture of a Chichester housing development
File picture of a Chichester housing development

She claims that one way to ensure that these developments can go ahead is to build new roads to accommodate them.

Oddly, although she mentions the need to carry out assessments of the environmental impact, she does not appear to give any weight at all to this in her support for a link road from the A27 which would have a very damaging effect on the Chichester Harbour AONB, on the proposed wildlife corridors essential to link downland and harbour and on the air quality and noise intrusion of those living nearby.

Ms Shepherd says that WSCC has asked our council to carry out a study to assess benefits and impacts of a new road. This suggests to me that the study is already weighted in favour of a new road.

There can be no long-term benefits in a new road that will damage the local area. If journey times are shortened, more vehicles will be encouraged to use this road. In time it will become just as congested as the present A27 is at certain times of day.

Obviously more housing will generate more car journeys, especially since new developments are often poorly placed for people to use public transport, or cycle or walk.

More roads will open up more land for housing and eventually there will be no space at all for nature.

The only people who will profit from all this are the large house building companies while the rest of us suffer a degraded local environment.