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Green light for 21km of temporary cycleways in West Sussex

Funding for all seven temporary cycleway schemes in West Sussex has been approved by the Department for Transport.

 

The decision is set to result in 21km of new and improved cycle lanes to promote cycling to enable sustainable travel choices on key commuting routes to relieve the pressures on public transport and as an alternative to the car.

 

Cllr Roger Elkins, cabinet member for highways and infrastructure, said: “This is excellent news and a testament to the hard work put in by our highways and transport officers to produce a successful submission to a tight deadline.

 

“The schemes will provide improved travel choice for both residents and visitors and help to link commuting destinations in each of the county’s borough and district areas as the Government eases lockdown in the COVID-19 crisis.”

 

Design work on the schemes is ongoing and started as soon as the Government announced potential funding for this first phase of emergency measures to support active travel. Details could be subject to change up to and including the construction stage. Timescales for when the schemes have to be started are tight and written descriptions, maps and plans are all indicative and could change as scheme designs are more fully developed.

 

The seven schemes will involve a combination of temporary traffic management, such as cones and signing, light segregation using ‘traffic wands’, planters, water-filled barriers, road markings and temporary 20mph speed limits in some cases.

 

In the Post area they are:

 

A286 Chichester Ring-Road (2km) Estimated cost: £74,000

 

This will involve reallocating road space for cycling by segregating lane one of the dual-carriageway to form a cycle lane, widening and providing light segregation on the existing cycleway on a busy gyratory.

 

The works will be supported by a 20mph speed limit and create links to existing cycle facilities or provide alternatives to cycle paths where social distancing may be difficult to maintain.

 

The route will link to the central retail area and other major employment sites, such as the University of Chichester and St Richard’s Hospital.

 

The scheme provides cycle lanes in both directions and has the potential for parts of the route to become permanent.

 

A259 Chichester to Bognor Regis (5km) Estimated cost £185,000

 

This will involve localised widening of the existing off-carriageway cycle track to enable social distancing on a busy commuter route. There is potential to explore converting one lane of the western dual carriageway to a shared cycle and bus lane.

 

The other schemes are:

 

Three Bridges to Manor Royal, Crawley and Pound Hill to Crawley town centre (4.5km) Estimated cost £166,500

 

A270 Upper Shoreham Road, Shoreham (4.6km) Estimated cost £170,200

 

A24 Worthing (2.9km) Estimated cost £107,300

 

– A281/B2237 Horsham Ring Road (0.4km) Estimated cost £14,800

 

– A22 Felbridge to East Grinstead town centre (1.7km) Estimated cost £62,900

 

The £781,000 is not guaranteed and may be clawed back should schemes not be started within four weeks of the allocation and completed with a further eight weeks. The money is to fund the implementation, maintenance and monitoring of the schemes. They will be closely monitored to ensure they are having a positive impact on local travel.

 

Further details of a second tranche of potential funding are expected from the Department for Transport soon and would be for both temporary and permanent improvements to help the transport network.

 

Highway officers have been working closely with district and borough council partners to look at a whole host of ways to improve cycling provision as a direct response to the easing of lockdown.

 

Alongside schemes which would require central funding, the officers continue to work with these partners on other measures which could be introduced at minimal expense but add even more safe space for cyclists.

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