It was with great interest that I visited the ‘Vision for Chichester’ exhibition at the university last Friday.
The supporting staff were most helpful and the visions clearly presented. However, I doubt if many people will object to the vision statements. It is when these ideas are transmitted into realistic proposals that the ‘half-glass-full’ flack will start.
It is clear to me that resolving the traffic and transport issues is key to achieving this vision. So, let’s start the ball rolling with a few radical proposals of my own. Unfortunately, with limited space I can only highlight my ideas rather than explain their reasoning.
Access from A27 bypass – via Portfield, Bognor Road and Tesco junctions only with Oving Road, Whyke Road and Stockbridge Road junctions left-in and left-out only.
Chichester city centre (within the walls) – vehicular access only for local residents, businesses, buses, taxis, disability badge holders and emergency services.
Restricted access achieved by greater control and management of the four junctions of Eastgate, Southgate, Westgate and Northgate as follows;
Eastgate area – downgrade Market Avenue for access only to the market car park and CDC car park and access for others within the walls listed above.
:: Pedestrianise eastern section of East Street up to Eastgate.
:: Close and regenerate all the other public car parks within the walls.
:: Close Market Avenue to through traffic near Cawley Road.
:: Convert the Hornet and the Needlemakers to two-way traffic (access only in the Hornet).
:: Close and pedestrianise St Pancras between Eastgate and New Park Road.
:: Extend pedestrian paved area in Eastgate.
Southgate area - restrict vehicular access to South Street and extend pedestrianisation southwards.
:: Reduce road widths in Southgate gyratory and regenerate with pedestrian/cycling priority schemes where possible.
:: Access a new relocated bus station at the railway station from Via Ravenna.
:: Downgrade the dual carriageway southern section of Avenue De Chartres to Southgate for access only.
:: Downgrade Stockbridge Road to A27.
Westgate area - close Westgate to through traffic at Mount Lane/Mercers thereby providing a safe cycle route.
:: Convert the Westgate roundabout to a fully signalised cross-roads junction with dedicated cycle/pedestrian phases.
:: Restrict vehicular access to the City Centre at this junction to those mentioned above.
Northgate area – signalise all junctions with a dedicated pedestrian/cyclist phase.
:: Reduce circulating carriageway to a single lane with hatched area to cycleway and footway on outside.
:: Longer term more radical proposal subject to future of Fire and Rescue Services station.
Finally, may I say that I believe a northern bypass will be the best solution to complement these city centre transport proposals?
That’s it folks. Is this radical and visionary enough for you?
Hawthorn Close, Chichester