A new report to tackle an old problem in Petworth

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It’s been a burning issue for two decades in Petworth with its narrow streets, huge articulated lorries and shoppers and residents vying for parking space.

Traffic has been the most vexing question which has faced successive town councils.

Frustrated residents have surfaced, campaigned and capitulated through lack of progress.

There is no doubt successive community leaders have done their best and there have been initiatives from suggested 20mph speed limits to innovative stickers warning motorists to beware of pedestrians.

But they have all been met with a demoralising metaphorical shrug of the shoulders in the corridors of power and consigned to obscurity with the convenient excuse ‘statistics say there isn’t a problem’.

The nightmare of lorries getting stuck was to a great extent eventually addressed with £140,000 of signs, but many still claim it did not solve the issue entirely.

And it cannot be denied that huge artics wedged between buildings is not an uncommon sight in the town.

Now the gauntlet has been taken up again with a new determination.

And this time Petworth’s town councillors have come at it from a different angle.

It made some councillors nervous when it collectively opened its corporate purse to commission a transport survey costing around £10,000.

But the results in the form of the draft report are giving new food for thought. People can comment via the Neighbourhood Plan questionnaire available to download from the Petworth Town Council website Petworth Town Council or in the Petworth Town Council offices and library or take part in the online survey at Neighbourhood Plan

The deadline is next Friday, July 8.

The transport survey has been carried out by Alan Baxter Ltd and consultants have carried out an assessment of the transport and movement issues in Petworth and given advice on how these can be improved or alleviated.

The work is separate from the massive neighbourhood plan project also underway in the town, but the plan’s steering group is hoping many of the issues and ideas can be incorporated into it.

The draft report has come up with recommendations focussing on improving gateways and links to the town, improving key public spaces and reducing the number of heavy goods vehicles through the centre.

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