A23 Active Travel Scheme revised plans before final decision

On the 15th March the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee will meet to discuss and make decisions on various topics including deciding whether to proceed with the A23 Active Travel Scheme, “phase 1”.

This follows a consultation period on designs which was held in December 2021, 400 responses were collected from various means, and some parts of the design have changed as a result of this.

The A23 scheme has been split down into 3 sections, which are referred to as “phases” despite all being part of phase 1. These sections are; Argyle Road to Cumberland Road, Cumberland Road to The Deneway & The Deneway to Mill Road Roundabout

However the revised scheme that councillors are looking at only ranges from Argyle Road to just before the South Road Traffic Light Junction. The traffic light controlled junctions have be omitted due to plans still being investigated the best layout as initial designs may impact traffic too much. Its unclear what will be done at the junctions since mention restraints such as space, time, funding & design specification.

The Future

If the committee approves the design, then the next step if to get a TRO (Traffic Restriction Order), since this is a permanent scheme unlike the A259 ones, it has to gain approval before construction. This needs to be consulted on first, assuming minimal rejections the TRO can be approved and construction can start. Phase 1 will likely take 3-6 months to complete due to many changes to the road, including new kerbing, signage, lighting & traffic signals.

The rest of Phase 1, 2 & 3 will have their consultation in the coming weeks or month (website mentions “early 2022”, these sections will then follow a similar process to this phase. An overall timeline is unclear, however its unlikely all three phases will be completed before June 2023.

The Plans

A PDF of the plans can be found at the bottom.

Starting at the Southern end of the scheme Argyle Road remains the same with parking removed for a new contra-flow lane on the road.
The raised crossing at the junction of Argyle Road & Preston Road remains the same, however the current Puffin Crossing will be converted to a Toucan crossing allowing access to/from Ditchling Rise.
The new bi-directional cycle track between Springfield Road & Ditchling Rise remains as the previous design. It will be 3m wide & require narrowing of the main carriageway to a single wide lane
The rest of the bi-directional cycle track remains as the previous design, however the bus stop locally narrows the cycle track.
The speed limit from 20mph to 30mph is also moved from the Viaduct to Stanford Avenue.
Most of Preston Road next to Preston Park remains the same as before, however one of the puffin crossings is relocated & an existing refuge crossing is replace with a “Toucan” crossing, however the drawings do not suggest it is a toucan crossing, in fact not really a crossing at all.

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