A27 Arundel Bypass: Developers reveal updated plans as consultation begins

Updated proposals for the A27 Arundel Bypass plans have been unveiled this week, as developers begin an eight-week consultation with the public.

National Highways' plans for upgrading the A27 at Arundel will feature a combination of improvements along the existing road through the South Downs National Park and Arundel.

The grey route features new bridges spanning the River Arun, over the Arun Valley Railway and over Binsted Rife, as well as a new junction at Crossbush, 'finally putting an end' to the ‘road to nowhere’ junction.

Under the plans, around 8km (4.9 miles) of new dual carriageway will be created to the south of the existing A27, from Crossbush to Fontwell roundabout. Around 6.6km (4.1 miles) of the existing A27 will be 'de-trunked'.

National Highways said the new bypass will start at Crossbush junction, which is 'currently a major bottleneck' heading towards Arundel from the east.

The A27 connects many coastal communities and serves a combined population of more than one million people.

"It is essential to those who live and work in the area," a National Highways spokesperson said.

"The plans will help improve journeys for tens of thousands of drivers using the A27 around Arundel, the only section of single carriageway between Worthing and the New Forest.

"The plans will also protect Arundel’s historic town centre and draw long distance traffic away from other, less suitable roads through the South Downs National Park."

The 'ambitious plans' for upgrading the A27 at Arundel are being put to the public for feedback as part of a statutory consultation which will run for eight weeks. Photo: National Highways

Bypass intends to reduce journey times

The grey route, which was chosen in October 2020, includes creating a new dual carriageway to join up the two existing sections either side of Arundel and will help to reduce journey times, improve reliability and make the road safer.

Andrew Griffith, MP for Arundel South Downs, has said 'there is more to do' but has offered his support in the hope the bypass will eliminate long-standing delays at the Crossbush Junction, and draw long distance traffic away from other less suitable roads.

He said: “The time has now come for residents across West Sussex to have their say on the long-awaited improvements to the A27 at Arundel.

"The project, which has been discussed for decades, will relieve the congestion and pollution that many experience on a daily basis.

"The project will also have a genuinely positive impact on the whole of West Sussex. It represents a substantial investment by the Government in West Sussex and I hope it will have a positive impact on the lives of residents and the local economy.

"I will continue to work closely with the communities most affected to secure appropriate mitigation measures. There is more to do, but I am pleased with the progress made already on road noise and in reducing the visual impact on the Binsted Rife Valley.”

'Plans will tackle one of the biggest traffic bottlenecks in the South East'

The project has faced strong opposition, with campaigners claiming that the multi-million pound project would be ‘environmentally damaging’. They added that National Highways ‘plans to carve out the historic countryside’ for its eight-kilometre dual carriageway scheme’.

Others shared the view that ‘something needs to be done’ and ‘we do need to have a bypass’. Click here to read more

The project was delayed in November. The developers said this was so that they could ‘better present all our findings’, and explain how the scheme will be ‘safe, affordable, environmentally-led and meets its aim of reducing congestion’.

National Highways Arundel Bypass senior project manager, Andrew Jackson, said he and his team have worked hard on the plans since the announcement of the grey route in 2020.

"These plans will tackle one of the biggest traffic bottlenecks in the South East and will improve journeys for thousands of drivers on the A27, not only in and around Arundel but along the whole south coast," he said.

“As well as being a traffic bottleneck, the existing A27 between the Crossbush and Fontwell East junctions experiences an above average number of accidents compared with other rural A-roads.”

Mr Jackson said Arundel is a 'special place' and has a 'unique cultural heritage which is rightly protected'.

He added: "We have worked hard on the plans over the past 15 months and assessed the route in greater detail so that people can see and understand all the factors that needed to be assessed and how the scheme has been designed to fit into the landscape.

"There is now much more detail available – I encourage people to look at the detailed consultation brochure and the flythrough to get an in-depth overview of where the main improvements have been made.

“The whole point of this statutory consultation is to talk to people and hear feedback on our plans. All the information is available online to allow people to better understand how the scheme will affect them and my team and I will be out at public events over the coming weeks ready to answer people’s questions.”

National Highways is holding 12 information exhibitions at venues across the area in addition to six ‘live chats’ throughout January and February so that people can examine the proposals and put any questions directly to project team.

Details on the proposals, document inspection locations and feedback forms will be available from today (Tuesday, January 11) until the consultation ends on March 8 at https://a27arundelbypass.consultation.ai/

Scroll to the top of the page to see a video flythrough of the updated proposals.

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