Why were the Northern Route options suddenly dropped?
At a stroke the chance for a proper consultation on the various options to improve the traffic in the area were dismissed. Despite requests, no reasons for the sudden decision have been forthcoming, nor has any explanation been given on why Highways England were allowed to spend so much time, effort and public money on major studies only to have them suddenly and arbitrarily discarded. Our MP was aware that the options were generating much interest locally, and could have been expected to pass on our interest to the Dept for Transport, and yet, the USofS chose to make his announcement removing four of the seven options less than two weeks before the consultation process was to begin.
It would be a naive person who did not suspect that something fishy had taken place.
We think that the residents of Chichester are entitled to know:
- why the decision was so sudden?
- why Highways England were allowed to waste so much public money on unrequired work?
- why we were led to believe that there would be a full consultation on all the options?
- what, if any, influence was brought to bear, and by whom?
- what were the assessed cost benefits,
- local, regional, and national,
- of all the original 7 options?
We will endeavour to get to the bottom of it, but experience in this matter so far does not fill anyone with confidence.