Huge package of transport investment for East Sussex proposed

A huge package of transport investments for East Sussex has been proposed as part of efforts to step up decarbonisation and economic growth across the region.

Transport for the South East (TfSE) has launched a 12-week consultation on its draft Strategic Investment Plan, a culmination of five years work which sets out interventions with a total capital cost of £45 billion over 27 years.

The package of measures would aim to reduce car trips and increase the amount of people choosing public transport or using active travel.

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Global policy interventions suggested in the plan include reversing the real terms increase in the cost of public transport compared to motoring, the potential for ‘new mobility’ such as electric bikes and electric scooters, a national road user charging system to provide an alternative source of funding to fuel duty, greater virtual working and improvements in integration across and between all modes of transport.

Transport improvements for East Sussex. Rail = red, highways = blue, mass transit = yellow, active travel = green

For East Sussex the plan puts forward a rail package, active travel, mass transit and highways works.

One of the biggest rail interventions is a High Speed rail link from Ashford serving Hastings, Bexhill and Eastbourne.

Other rail improvements listed are: faster services for the East Coastway Line, Newhaven Port capacity and rail freight interchange upgrades, Hurst Green to Uckfield electrification, Uckfield - Lewes Wealden Line reopening (traction and capacity enhancements and reconfiguration at Lewes).

When it comes to highways improvements investment is proposed for the A27 East of Lewes, the A27 between Lewes and Polegate, the A259 South Coast corridor between Brighton and Eastbourne, the A27 Falmer junction, A259 level crossing removals east of Rye, bypasses for the A21 at Flimwell and Hurst Green, the A22 Corridor - Hailsham to Uckfield, A26 Lewes – Newhaven realignment and junction enhancements, A26 Lewes – Uckfield enhancements, A22 Uckfield bypass dualling, A22 smart road trial proposition study, Hastings and Bexhill distributor roads and lastly A27 bus stop and layby improvements between Falmer and Polegate.

Strategic mobility hubs are also suggested for Eastbourne/Polegate, as well as mass rapid transit systems for Eastbourne/Wealden and Hastings/Bexhill involving significant mode shift from car to bus services.