Our questions for candidates: the Conservatives respond

With local elections coming soon, we have offered four questions to parties and candidates standing for West Sussex County Council and Adur District Council.

Here are the responses we have received from East Worthing and Shoreham Conservatives

Our question: In recent years, the people of Shoreham have experienced a growing dependence on cars as a default means of transport – even for short journeys. New housing developments look to bring more challenges for congestion and air pollution. How do you see the future of transport in our town? What changes need to happen in order for people to feel they have more choices for getting around safely and sustainably?

The Conservatives respond…

“We are well aware of this issue and the impact on our health and well-being from both lack of exercise and the pollution created by transport. Adur was one of the first districts in West Sussex to approve a Local Walking and Cycling Plan, which was developed in consultation with many groups, to increase active travel and we are now taking every opportunity to implement that in further consultation with our community.  This action includes receiving a £250,000 grant from the government to develop a proposal along the Upper Shoreham Road, including a safe crossing over the Steyning Road, and nearby roads to create segregated cycling and safer routes to our two senior schools, Shoreham Academy and Sir Robert Woodard Academy.  For new developments, those along Shoreham Harbour are required to make space for a new cycle lane into Brighton as well as provide a shared car club and New Monks Farm/A27 to provide a safe walking and cycle route to link Shoreham up to Lancing and the Sir Robert Woodard Academy.  New Monks Farm will have a dedicated access route that can only be used by walkers, cyclists and public transport. Any new residential and commercial build has to have safe cycle storage and provision for EV charging.

“We are working with Worthing Borough and Brighton and Hove Councils to implement an innovative bike sharing scheme which will provide electric bikes as well as those requiring slightly more effort.  This will not only be useful for our community but it will also put Shoreham on the tourist map to help support our local businesses.

“Segregated cycling schemes are appropriate for key strategic routes but we need to ensure everyone feels safe on all our roads whether walking, cycling or driving so we will continue to promote and assist walking, cycling and public transport to reduce substantially the reliance on cars.  This policy will create more space on our roads for users who have to drive.”


Our question: Between district and county councils, there are many policies, strategies and consultation reports describing a need for cycle infrastructure. Though many councillors express support or sympathy for the cause of improving sustainable transport, an appetite for actual change is sometimes harder to find. Alongside the crucial task of listening to local people, what are your thoughts on the role of councillors as leaders, helping us to consider new, perhaps unfamiliar, ideas?

The Conservatives respond:

“The government has published world leading and exciting policies on carbon neutrality and sustainable and active travel.  As local councillors we have to listen so we can effectively represent and to take the lead on implementing that policy so that it best serves our community.  Last year Tim Loughton and Kevin Boram held a consultation exercise, which received 1,400 responses, on cycle routes around Shoreham. In addition this year West Sussex County Council held a further consultation on proposals for Upper Shoreham Road and other routes. We also fight for our community. Kevin received overwhelming support from a scrutiny committee against a decision made by West Sussex County Council on cycle lanes in Shoreham. Without that action Kevin would not have received the £250,000 to develop permanent cycle schemes.

“The Conservatives are not scared of taking bold initiatives to protect your environment.  As an example, the purchase of New Salts Farm and Pads Farm by Adur District Council will protect that land from further development will enable us to improve local wildlife habitat including providing rare intertidal and estuarial zones.”


Our question: Certain measures are recognised as ways to create safety and choice on our streets, by improving conditions for people choosing to walk or cycle. What are your thoughts on options like these?
• A network of high quality separated cycle routes reaching every part of Shoreham
• ‘School streets’, where areas outside schools are closed to traffic at the start and end of the school day
• 20 mph areas, reducing danger by lowering vehicle speeds in residential streets
• Reducing excessive traffic in selected residential streets by installing filters that allow pedestrians, cycles, emergency services and buses through, while limiting other vehicles to access only.

The Conservatives respond:

“Shoreham has changed significantly since the last in-depth study was completed on road use within the town. The Adur Local Plan is creating much needed housing and business space to create a sustainable community, not only financially but environmentally.  We will fight for a full road strategy review for Shoreham so that we can deliver transport schemes fit for our community and its future. All of the solutions above are great and the Conservatives fully support them in the right place.  Too many schemes implemented by other councils have had an overall adverse effect on the community. We need to ensure that Shoreham is a great and sustainable place for all to live and work.”


Our question: What other ideas do you have for transport in and around Shoreham and Adur?

The Conservatives respond:

“The way we live and work is changing rapidly, not only as a result of the impact of technology but also to deliver our carbon commitments to create a sustainable town to protect our future. We are committed to providing green and sustainable jobs, a vibrant and financially sustainable High Street and business sector and to protect and improve our natural and built environments.  Communities consist of many interrelated activities and cycling is important, but it is only a part of the holistic view we need to take to deliver that sustainable future. This includes interconnected public transport, EV charging points, as well as safe cycling routes and facilities that every-one feels safe to use whatever the time of day.”



Our questions for candidates: Labour responds

With local elections coming soon, we have offered four questions to parties and candidates standing for Adur District Council and West Sussex County Council.

Here are the responses we have received from East Worthing and Shoreham Labour Party…

Labour begins:

“In our election statement What Labour stands for in Adur we voice our support for “safe cycle routes – designed and planned with the community”.”

“Your questions are very Shoreham-centred, not surprisingly as you are Shoreham-By-Cycle! We have candidates who wish to represent all wards of Adur District Council and local county council divisions. All support improvements that will make it easier and safer for people to access spaces and get around with a choice to walk or cycle.

“We believe these choices must be available to people who are young, old, individuals or families, children going to school, adults going to work and for those with a physical disability.

Our question: In recent years, the people of Shoreham have experienced a growing dependence on cars as a default means of transport – even for short journeys. New housing developments look to bring more challenges for congestion and air pollution. How do you see the future of transport in our town? What changes need to happen in order for people to feel they have more choices for getting around safely and sustainably?

“In question 1 you ask about new housing developments and what changes need to happen in order for people to feel they have more choices for getting around safely and sustainably.

“We believe any new development should be of a scale that does not damage our environment or the local infrastructure. Any development over a certain size must offer additional infrastructure whether that be health services, schools, community open spaces or cycle routes and bus services. We support the creation of and better linking of safe pedestrian and cycle routes to schools, town centres and the sea, and improved, zero-emission, local public transport. At a county level we support clean school transport and an integrated travel system with, for example, interchangeable tickets across trains and buses, and better rural and suburban bus routes with subsidies restored.

Our question: Between district and county councils, there are many policies, strategies and consultation reports describing a need for cycle infrastructure. Though many councillors express support or sympathy for the cause of improving sustainable transport, an appetite for actual change is sometimes harder to find. Alongside the crucial task of listening to local people, what are your thoughts on the role of councillors as leaders, helping us to consider new, perhaps unfamiliar, ideas?

Labour responds:

“In question 2 you point out there is no shortage of district and country council policies, strategies and consultation reports describing a need for cycle infrastructure and you ask for our thoughts on the role of councillors as leaders, helping us to consider new, perhaps unfamiliar, ideas.

“Adur is not well served by the current county and district council leaderships who talk a lot but do little to support walking and cycling. West Sussex County Council has started to charge for Bikeability courses in schools; we would reverse this decision. We are committed to listening to our communities and responding to their needs; taking advice and looking at the evidence on the effectiveness of different approaches. That means standing up for innovations and replicating best practice of other councils to improve the well-being of our communities.”

Our question: Certain measures are recognised as ways to create safety and choice on our streets, by improving conditions for people choosing to walk or cycle. What are your thoughts on options like these?
• A network of high quality separated cycle routes reaching every part of Shoreham
• ‘School streets’, where areas outside schools are closed to traffic at the start and end of the school day
• 20 mph areas, reducing danger by lowering vehicle speeds in residential streets
• Reducing excessive traffic in selected residential streets by installing filters that allow pedestrians, cycles, emergency services and buses through, while limiting other vehicles to access only.

Labour responds:

“In question 3 you ask our views on a range of initiatives from school streets, through 20mph zones to filters allowing only some forms of transport into a given street. We would like to see plans and action, not simply for a single street, but for zones and the larger area; looking at how cycle and pedestrian routes can be created and improved; how motor traffic in streets used as rat-runs can be re-routed or limited and creating school streets where possible for certain periods to increase safety and air quality. Each of the initiatives you list has merit, as do low traffic neighbourhoods, in the right places, but will be most effective as part a thought-through plan for our streets. We support a network of separated cycle routes in Shoreham, and in other parts of Adur too.

“We support the introduction of a bike hire scheme.

“One of our commitments is to improve and regenerate local centres. That would include looking at improved cycle parking and routes to and from centres and more pedestrianised areas. Improved signage for town centre car parking, as suggested by local traders could also help to reduce motor traffic.

“All of the initiatives you list are already in place in other parts of this country and further afield. The evidence for their effectiveness and how they can be best used is clear and tested. We do not think there is a need for delay in coming forward with plans and action at county or district council level.”

Our questions for candidates: Liberal Democrats respond

With local elections coming soon, we have offered four questions to parties and candidates standing for WSCC and ADC.

Here are the responses we have received from Shoreham and Southwick Liberal Democrats

Our question: In recent years, the people of Shoreham have experienced a growing dependence on cars as a default means of transport – even for short journeys. New housing developments look to bring more challenges for congestion and air pollution. How do you see the future of transport in our town? What changes need to happen in order for people to feel they have more choices for getting around safely and sustainably?

The Liberal Democrats respond:

“This is a really good question. I would like to see the introduction of more cycle lanes. New cycle lanes should integrate with the current road layout and Shoreham-By-Cycle has provided some excellent mock-ups of how they could look once implemented. They should, of course, be implemented following a consultation with local residents. By having an infrastructure friendly to bikes, it will allow more people to make short journeys by bike and remove the dependency on cars.

“I would want to see ALL new-builds have an electric charge point for electric vehicles included. This shouldn’t be an afterthought – this should be part of the initial design. By having an electrical charge point people can think about buying an electric car without having to worry about additional costs relating to the installation of a charging point.

“It would be great to convert the taxi stand to a wireless charging platform so whilst taxis are waiting for fares they are also charging. This would minimise pollution and also move taxis over to be electric. They are trialling this in Nottingham (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-nottinghamshire-51140689)

“I also want to see pavements being prioritised over roads at junctions. If you take the Netherlands as an example, you can see that it is cars that need to slow down at junctions and not people for cars. (https://departmentfortransport.wordpress.com/2012/08/21/continuous-paths-across-minor-junctions/)

“I would like to see more areas pedestrianised. The pedestrianised areas minimise traffic whilst allowing people to walk around Shoreham without the fear of traffic. The areas also allow cafés and restaurants to provide more outdoor space and rejuvenate our High Street. I also want to see more mature trees planted along the High Street and the A259 to help combat air pollution but also to provide more greenery to the centre of town.”

Our question: Between district and county councils, there are many policies, strategies and consultation reports describing a need for cycle infrastructure. Though many councillors express support or sympathy for the cause of improving sustainable transport, an appetite for actual change is sometimes harder to find. Alongside the crucial task of listening to local people, what are your thoughts on the role of councillors as leaders, helping us to consider new, perhaps unfamiliar, ideas?

The Liberal Democrats respond:

“I believe as councillors we should be acting as intermediaries between people for and against a project. In order for a project to be more appealing, I think it needs to be carried out following a number of criteria:

“People need to be included in the consultation, design and decision-making process. By being part of the process, there will be greater acceptance to change.

“The changes need to show that they will be beneficial to the people being impacted but also to the wider community. People care less about the cost of a project or how much money it will save. They want to know how it will improve their lives.”

Our question: Certain measures are recognised as ways to create safety and choice on our streets, by improving conditions for people choosing to walk or cycle. What are your thoughts on options like these?

  • A network of high-quality separated cycle routes reaching every part of Shoreham.

The Liberal Democrats respond:

“Totally agree with this concept.”

  • ‘School streets’, where areas outside schools are closed to traffic at the start and end of the school day.

The Liberal Democrats respond:

“This could be challenging as some parents may need to use the car to take their children either because they live further afield or they are dropping off their children on the way to work. I think this would need to be investigated in more depth.”

  • 20 mph areas, reducing danger by lowering vehicle speeds in residential streets

The Liberal Democrats respond:

“Another great idea. This would help minimise risk of accidents and eventual fatalities. Better for the environment.”

  • Reducing excessive traffic in selected residential streets by installing filters that allow pedestrians, cycles, emergency services and buses through, while limiting other vehicles to access only.

The Liberal Democrats respond:

“This is a good idea and could integrate with my proposal for the continuous paths as in The Netherlands.”

Our question: What other ideas do you have for transport in and around Shoreham and Adur?

The Liberal Democrats respond:

“I think I have shared most of my ideas under question 1.”

Ian Jones makes the following additional comment:

“To support cycle lanes, a more realistic appreciation of the costs involved is required. The USR cycle lane would require proper curbing for segregation and perhaps lights on the Holmbush roundabout. Painting a few lines and planting orange rubber poles was a somewhat underwhelming way to spend the grant monies.”

David Batchelor provides this additional analysis:

“The questions are around two themes:

  • the quality of non-car infrastructure 
  • reducing dependence on owned cars 

“It is not about pedestrians versus car versus bikes. As the USR temporary cycle lane debacle showed, bad/zero thought and design is bad for everybody and causes friction and failure. Contrast that with Steine Gardens to the level in Brighton where there is a brilliantly thought-out scheme where cycles, pedestrians and cars live side-by-side – just brilliant.

“Shoreham is largely flat with multiple east-west routes for which we can, with more thought than money, create an environment.

“Dependence on cars – you need next-level commitment to go car free. Most of us just can’t do that. What we can do is take practical steps to give everyone options:

  • “We have bike rental schemes in Worthing and Brighton – we are in the middle of both let’s encourage them to embrace Shoreham.
  • “Car clubs – yeah, parking is a mare in Shoreham, but how many cars are a rarely-used first or second car. If we actively encourage car clubs – using the Pond Street car park as a base – that would provide options. Many second cars could go, as would the occasional sole-car user.

“Let’s do some work on the Shoreham to Bramber section of the Downs Link. We can easily separate out bike and pedestrians to make it better for all. “

Answers drafted by:

Nico Kearns (WSCC candidate for Shoreham North and Adur candidate for Southlands)

with support from:

Ian Jones (WSCC candidate for Southwick and Adur candidate for Southwick Green)

Neville Pressley (WSCC candidate for Shoreham South and Adur candidate for St Mary’s)

David Batchelor (Adur candidate for Buckingham)

Our questions for candidates: The Green Party responds

With local elections coming soon, we have offered four questions to parties and candidates.

Here are the responses we have received from Adur Green Party…

Our question: In recent years, the people of Shoreham have experienced a growing dependence on cars as a default means of transport – even for short journeys. New housing developments look to bring more challenges for congestion and air pollution. How do you see the future of transport in our town? What changes need to happen in order for people to feel they have more choices for getting around safely and sustainably? 

The Green Party responds:

“Safe walking and cycling routes from our homes to key destinations, such as workplaces, schools, shops, parks, train station.  

“Using the responses to the previous 5 travel surveys (LCWIP etc) to create properly integrated walking routes and cycle lanes along USR, Middle road and eventually the A259 coast road. These must take account of drivers’ needs and the views of people who live on these roads. Good design which allows residents to access their properties whilst providing safe routes for children, older folks and inexperienced cyclists can bring about significant changes in rates of bike journeys and help reduce traffic and air pollution. Not everyone can cycle everywhere. But many people can cycle somewhere! 

“School streets to keep kids and parents safe on the school run, reduce road rage and congestion near schools, reduce air pollution which disproportionately impacts developing lungs and leads to increased incidence of childhood asthma and other respiratory conditions.

“20 is plenty zone in the little side streets in the heart of Shoreham-by-sea and residential streets where residents want this. Reduce the speed limit on the A283 Steyning road (from National speed limit to 30 mph) from the roundabout under the A27 flyover to the Red Lion.

“More effective traffic management to reduce speeding, ease congestion, improve air quality. Enforce the restriction preventing aggregates lorries and Port traffic from using the A283 Old Shoreham road and the A259 High Street. 

“Safe road crossings at key points e.g from the Red Lion to the Downs link. And mid way between the Swiss Cottage and Amsterdam where there’s access to the river but no safe crossing for pedestrians, school children, residents or elderly people. These safe crossings enable dog walkers, family groups, people in wheel chairs and those on bike rides to cross directly from Connaught Avenue leading from the station or from North Shoreham to the river side. Then to continue on over the Toll bridge to Lancing and Worthing or up on to the Downs. 

“Rethink parking.  

“Many more people are having goods and groceries delivered. Safe parking needs to be planned so drop offs don’t cause hold-ups

“Designated disabled parking on the high Street so people with very limited mobility can readily access town centre shops, cafes, pubs and restaurants. 

“Level access or ramped routes from the Riverside walk into Ropetackle North. And from the new flood defences alongside the airport down to Cecil Pashley Way. This is necessary for people on mobility scooters, parents with buggies and people on bikes. 

“Open the underpass/subway at the station! 

“Enforce pavement parking bans to make getting around easier and safer for pedestrians and wheeled users. “

Our question:  Between district and county councils, there are many policies, strategies and consultation reports describing a need for cycle infrastructure. Though many councillors express support or sympathy for the cause of improving sustainable transport, an appetite for actual change is sometimes harder to find. Alongside the crucial task of listening to local people, what are your thoughts on the role of councillors as leaders, helping us to consider new, perhaps unfamiliar, ideas? 

The Green Party responds:

“Raising new ideas, introducing better approaches to break down the same old-same old ways of doing things. Modelling the change we want to see by, for example, walking and cycling to council meetings. Inviting experts or people with success stories from other areas to share their experiences to inspire and motivate change. E.g let’s hear from the designers of the mini Holland scheme in Walthamstow. Or from successfully implemented school streets groups in Brighton.”

 Our question: Certain measures are recognised as ways to create safety and choice on our streets, by improving conditions for people choosing to walk or cycle. What are your thoughts on options like these? 


• A network of high quality separated cycle routes reaching every part of Shoreham 

The Green Party responds:

“LCWIP has identified primary and secondary routes. The primary routes are mainly East-West along A270, Middle road and A259. The secondary routes are North-South. Each route requires a different style of solution and will need to be handled thoughtfully. Following the recent consultation the development of at least one of these routes should be completed within a year. 

“If the infrastructure is there then people will use it. Without high quality, segregated routes people who are not accomplished cyclists may feel intimidated. It is only once the routes have been in place for about 18 months that we will be able to evaluate their effectiveness and improve the small details. It should be expected that there will be some initial resistance from some stakeholders but councillors and staff must be prepared to make bold decisions for the long term sustainability of transport options.”

 
• ‘School streets’, where areas outside schools are closed to traffic at the start and end of the school day 

The Green Party responds:

“Shoreham Academy Stoney Lane entrance, St Peter’s Sullington Way, the Beach Primary and Swiss Gardens Primary on Swiss Gardens, are ideal schools to develop school streets proposals. Post pandemic we need to take air pollution seriously to keep the population in better respiratory health in case of another covid wave. School streets are a primary way of addressing children’s health and safety.”

 
• 20 mph areas, reducing danger by lowering vehicle speeds in residential streets 

The Green Party responds:

“Essential for all our well-being. I Live on a road which is always congested from 7-9.30 a.m and 4-6 p.m plus every sunny weekend or holiday. It was extraordinary to witness the improved quality of life during Lockdown 1 when traffic became virtually non-existent. Speeding cars create noise, danger and poor air quality. These prevent the formation of strong neighbourhood relationships. Re routing traffic onto primary routes, reducing the need for people to drive by providing safe and affordable alternative ways of getting around can reduce rat running and congestion.”


• Reducing excessive traffic in selected residential streets by installing filters that allow pedestrians, cycles, emergency services and buses through, while limiting other vehicles to access only

The Green Party responds:

“Modal filters are a great idea but must be well designed. The people who live directly at the point of the filter will need regular info and discussion during the design and development phase to enable them to see how things will work for them and to understand the possible wider benefits for their community. Not everyone will like everything and the planners and politicians need to accept this.”
  
Our question: What other ideas do you have for transport in and around Shoreham and Adur? 

The Green Party responds:

“In West Street prevent right turns at the High Street end. Left turns only would stop much rat running and reduce hold ups on the eastbound lane from the roundabout. 

“Introduce a car club at each new build apartment block. 

“Extend the Brighton Bike scheme into Shoreham and Lancing. 

“The current rail line is to the South of the developed coastal strip. The coastal route is served by the 700. But there are poor and expensive public transport options along a northern route. An express bus route or driverless light rail or tram service along the A27 between Brighton and Worthing could take many commuters and children traveling to schools and colleges out of cars. This would need significant vision from DfT and Highways England and is outside of the scope of Adur District Council. “

Local elections 2021: Our questions for candidates

On 6 May 2021, local elections will enable the people of Shoreham to select preferred candidates for a raft of important posts:
West Sussex County Council – all seats are up for election , including two in Shoreham, two in Lancing and one in Southwick.
Adur District Council – half of all seats are up for election
Sussex Police and Crime Commisioner – up for election

The role of local democracy is vital in working towards safe streets and easier, more convenient infrastructure that enables the choice of cycling for everyday journeys. WSCC has the crucial responsibility for highways and infrastructure, while ADC controls decisions around planning and other local matters.

JUMP STRAIGHT TO RESPONSES…
Labour
Green
Liberal Democrats
Conservatives

For district and county council candidates, we offer the following questions, to help us all better understand their positions on transport in and around Shoreham. We invite candidates’ responses, which we will share publicly, to help the people of Shoreham with their voting decisions…

1. In recent years, the people of Shoreham have experienced a growing dependence on cars as a default means of transport – even for short journeys. New housing developments look to bring more challenges for congestion and air pollution. How do you see the future of transport in our town? What changes need to happen in order for people to feel they have more choices for getting around safely and sustainably?


2. Between district and county councils, there are many policies, strategies and consultation reports describing a need for cycle infrastructure. Though many councillors express support or sympathy for the cause of improving sustainable transport, an appetite for actual change is sometimes harder to find. Alongside the crucial task of listening to local people, what are your thoughts on the role of councillors as leaders, helping us to consider new, perhaps unfamiliar, ideas?


3. Certain measures are recognised as ways to create safety and choice on our streets, by improving conditions for people choosing to walk or cycle. What are your thoughts on options like these?
• A network of high quality separated cycle routes reaching every part of Shoreham
• ‘School streets’, where areas outside schools are closed to traffic at the start and end of the school day
• 20 mph areas, reducing danger by lowering vehicle speeds in residential streets
• Reducing excessive traffic in selected residential streets by installing filters that allow pedestrians, cycles, emergency services and buses through, while limiting other vehicles to access only.
 
4. What other ideas do you have for transport in and around Shoreham and Adur?

If you are a candidate in the elections, feel free to respond to us by email to shorehambycycle@gmail.com, or as a comment on this post. We will share your answers with the public.

SEE RESPONSES FROM…
Conservatives
Liberal Democrats
Green
Labour

Let’s talk about Middle Road

This important street needs improvement, but should not be seen as a simple diversion to placate critics of an Upper Shoreham Road cycle route.

In the current WSCC consultation on cycling and walking, Upper Shoreham Road occupies the bulk of the conversation – with good reason, seeing as it’s been identified several times as primary route in a future cycle network.



But Upper Shoreham Road is not the only street that’s mentioned in WSCC’s engagement. Eastern Avenue and Middle Road, considered until now as secondary routes, both get mentions.

Should Eastern Avenue and Middle Road be made better for walking and cycling?

Absolutely. We’ve said for years that Middle Road, as it stands, functions poorly. At school times in particular, it becomes congested and dangerous. Thousands of children use Middle Road to reach Shoreham Academy, and there’s an uneasy, sometimes dangerous, tension between people travelling by car, foot and bike. We’ve worked hard with Councillor Debs Stainforth, trying to persuade WSCC to make simple improvements, but we’ve been unsuccessful.



Should Middle Road be considered an alternative route to the full length of Upper Shoreham Road?

No. Middle Road deserves change, but so does Upper Shoreham Road – for different reasons. Upper Shoreham Road connects together shops, medical facilities, parks and thousands of homes. Every strategic study into transport in Shoreham identifies the full length of Upper Shoreham Road as a key part of a future cycle network. It wouldn’t be right to dodge this necessary task by simply trying to push it south.

Is there space for a cycleway on Middle Road and Eastern Avenue?

Very good question. But this is where it gets tricky. Middle Road is a very different kind of road to Upper Shoreham Road. Fully separated facilities for cycling, along with good space for walking, would mean a reduction in driving space – or maybe even a stop to using Middle Road as a through driving route (for part of the day, at least). Measures like this might be needed, but they may be difficult, they may be unpopular, and they deserve careful consideration. New Department for Transport design and funding rules won’t allow for half-hearted bodges.

So, our advice:

Yes, let’s identify Middle Road (and the connecting Eastern Avenue) as spaces to improve in future. But let’s NOT let them distract us from Upper Shoreham Road – which needs a high quality, safe cycle route from end to end.

Make your feelings known to WSCC now by using its survey and mapping tool.

Two-way or one-way cycle tracks: What’s the difference?

It’s easy to agree that we need good quality cycle routes in locations like Upper Shoreham Road. But what’s harder to decide is the exact format and layout that should be used.

There are multiple options, and it takes the knowledge of skilled, specialist designers – combined with the most up-to-date government design guidance – to figure out which one is right for which route.

One of the biggest choices is between two layouts in particular:

Two one-way cycle tracks – one on each side of the road
…or…
A single two-way track, on just one side of a road

This could be one of the key choices we face in Shoreham. Both option have merits – if designed and built properly – but both have their drawbacks.

Let’s take a look:

Two one-way cycle tracks (one on each side of the road)

  • Easy and instinctive to understand and use on a bike
  • Easy to cross when entering or leaving driveways, with just one direction of cycle traffic to check for
  • Well-suited to roads with many side turnings
  • Good compliance and usage by people on bikes

But:

  • Requires changes to both side of street
  • Requires good design alongside parking areas

Single two-way cycle track

  • Allows simple, largely unchanged layout for parked cars on the opposite side
  • Allows easy overtaking of slower cyclists by faster cyclists
  • Can be an efficient use of space
  • Well-suited to roads with long uninterrupted sections without junctions

But:

  • Potential difficulty or danger for drivers leaving driveways or side roads – with two directions of cycles to check for.
  • Additional difficulty for drivers turning into side roads.
  • Can mean bike on bikes riding very close to oncoming cars (unless protected by a row of parked cars)
  • At night, increased risk of drivers being dazzled by bike lights, and cyclists being dazzled by car headlights
  • Increased chance of non-compliance, leading to pavement cycling on opposite side

So, given the options on Upper Shoreham Road, which is best?

Let’s take a look at the Department for Transport design guidance:

6.2.16 – Two-way cycle tracks may result in the following problems:

– transitioning between the cycle track and the carriageway is more difficult for cyclists travelling against the flow of traffic

– the interface between the cycle track and major junctions along the route can be more complex there may be more risks associated with retaining priority over side roads or busy accesses

– cyclists’ accessibility to premises along the route on the opposite side of the carriageway is reduced it is more difficult for pedestrians, especially disabled people, to cross a two-way cycle track where they do not have priority

– cyclists may be dazzled by the headlights of motor vehicles. Similarly, cyclists’ use of highpowered lighting can dazzle or be confusing to oncoming drivers.

How best can we address these problems? The Department for Transport guidance is clear:

6.2.17 – Providing a one way cycle track on each side
of the carriageway addresses most of these issues.

There is a choice – and either option could work – if well-designed. But on balance, given the extra risks and the government guidance, our recommendation is that the option of two one-way lanes offers the best layout for Upper Shoreham Road.

What do you think? Which option will you favour when you participate in WSCC’s consultation?

A long wait for serious change on Upper Shoreham Road

“There is no funding in the tranche 2 allocation for building a scheme in Shoreham.”

Cllr Roger Elkins, Cabinet Member for Highways and Infrastructure

Will a permanent cycleway replace Upper Shoreham Road’s pop-up scheme? The West Sussex highways boss confirms: Shoreham can expect to wait a long time…

Anyone who has written to West Sussex County Council about the planned removal of Upper Shoreham Road’s successful pop-up cycle lane will be familiar with the council’s supposed assurance that, following the removal of our current cycle lane, plans will be set in motion regarding a higher quality, permanent, replacement.

This sounds positive, doesn’t it? But we became wary of this concept’s dependence on future funding, and distinct vagueness around timescales.

So we addressed some questions to Cllr Roger Elkins, WSCC’s Cabinet Member for Highways and Infrastructure:

  1. What is the likelihood that efforts to secure funding and design for a permanent Upper Shoreham Road cycle scheme will be successful?
  2. Given the necessary process of design and consultation, what is the very soonest that a permanent scheme can be expected to be built on Upper Shoreham Road?
  3. Similarly, bearing in mind the process that must be gone through, what is the longest time this whole process and construction may take?
  4. In your view, what is the most likely period of time for which Upper Shoreham Road will be without any protection for people using bikes – between the imminent removal of pop-up safety measures and the completion of a possible new scheme?

In his reply to us, after mentioning that DfT Active Travel Fund Phase 2 funding will be used in early 2021 for the purpose of “engaging with stakeholders”, Cllr Elkins goes on to clarify that the future of cycling facilities on Upper Shoreham Road is dependent on the possibility of future – not yet announced – funding, and timescales simply can’t be determined:

“There is no funding in the tranche 2 allocation for building a scheme in Shoreham. Any scheme that is developed would need to be funded from further tranches of the Active Travel Fund which is subject to government budgetary processes and timescales. The success of a bid to the ATF will be dependent on the case we are able to make for the scheme. This will be informed by the engagement work mentioned above and the costs / benefits of whatever scheme proposal is agreed. Until there is clarity on these things it is not possible to determine the programme for delivery of a scheme.”

Realistically, this means a long wait between the removal of Upper Shoreham Road’s existing scheme (which has more than doubled cycling numbers) and the arrival of its replacement.

Our understanding is the wait looks certain to exceed a year. 18 months may be an optimistic estimate, and a longer timespan may be likely – all this, of course, dependent on a successful funding bid.

A perfectly reasonable compromise position exists – and was proposed by Cllr Kevin Boram, county councillor for south Shoreham. Cllr Boram suggested that the existing pop-up cycle lanes be allowed to stay for a few months longer, so that while engagement and consultation for a permanent scheme begins, the measurable benefits of the existing project are not lost – particularly for children, parents and people new to using bikes for their short journeys.

Sadly, while a WSCC scrutiny committee voted 6-2 that there was merit in Cllr Boram’s request to think again, Cllr Elkins declined this opportunity to retain facilities for safer cycling on Upper Shoreham Road in 2021.

The future of Upper Shoreham Road: What are our options?

As part of efforts to untangle the complicated business of Upper Shoreham Road’s disappearing cycle lanes, Tim Loughton MP is conducting a survey (top tip – turn your phone sideways if filling in the survey on mobile) to help understand the feelings of local people when it comes to what form a cycle lane in this location should take – assuming funding can be found to establish something more permanent.

First things first: While this discussion goes on – and while future funding is sought – there’s no reason not to keep our existing pop-up lanes for the time being: especially during the winter months when children travel to school in gloomy conditions. If you agree, do write to Tim, and to your county councillor, to make this point.

The Department for Transport’s new design guidance

But turning to the future, we think all decisions should be informed by access to information and ideas. How else can we have a meaningful conversation? So we’ve assembled some of the options open to us as we discuss what the future of Upper Shoreham Road should look like.

Research shows most people agree that safer spaces for cycling should be created in our towns. Let’s look at some of the choices available to help us make that a reality. Many of the tricky points of cycling design have been made much easier by the publication of a new Department for Transport guide to Cycle Infrastructure Design, and some of the ideas below can be found in its pages.

Let’s get started…

Location, Location, Location

Is Upper Shoreham Road the right position for a cycle route? We know some people are suggesting alternatives. It’s worth knowing that in every single survey or study, Upper Shoreham Road always emerges as a key part of a future cycle network. It’s easy to see why: it’s a wide, useful road that connects together so many useful destinations. West Sussex County Council, the Department for Transport and Sustrans all agree on this – as do Adur & Worthing Councils, whose Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan received a huge positive response during its public consultation phase.

Separation for protection

It’s now standard practice in street design for people on bikes to be physically separated from motor traffic. But there are many ways to do this. Most don’t involve orange plastic wands. There are posts of other colours and materials; there are barriers, kerbs, and even flower beds. Which would you prefer?

Minimum width

Government guidance says one-way cycleways should be a minimum of 2m. This allows for safe overtaking, for parents riding beside children, and for people using trikes or wider cycles. Yet our current pop-up lanes are only 1.5m at their very widest. A longer-term lane must meet standards, and most of Upper Shoreham Road has enough space to easily accommodate this. Where possible, wider widths than this would create even more space for safe, easy use.

A smooth ride

No-one likes pot-holes and road debris. And when a cycleway is narrower than standard, it can be even harder to steer round irregularities in the road surface. So should an improved surface be part of future plans? Should it be a standard road material, or coloured?

One way or two?

Not all cycleways look like Upper Shoreham Road’s current pop-up lanes, with a lane each side of the street. Some other designs use a two-way layout, like a miniature road of its own. This way of using space has pros and cons. What do you think?

Better junctions

One of the weaknesses of our current pop-up lanes id the way they work at junctions. People on bikes can be vulnerable if they’re not noticed at junctions. Luckily, new government guidance makes is clear how junctions can be designed more safely – with greater visibility as lanes pass turnings, and reshaped corners to make crossing easier on foot – and encourage caution in people who are driving.

Creating more space for car parking

Even on roads where most people have large driveways, it can still be useful to allow for additional parking, for things like deliveries and visitors. Parking should never interrupt a cycle lane, and painted lanes running along the outside of parked cars are not safe, so there’s another option, called ‘floating parking’ – where parked cars act as a kind of protection between people and motor traffic.

Floating parking doesn’t work on every road – and sometimes it’s best used only for particular sections, rather than along a whole street. Might this be a good idea on parts of Upper Shoreham Road? Could it allow the best of both worlds?

End-to-end connection

We all know that the most useful cycleways connect up to other parts of a network, so journeys can continue. And that’s something our current Upper Shoreham Road lanes don’t do well. So what should happen by the River Adur, to allow journeys to connect to the Old Tollbridge and the Downs Link? Should there be a ‘toucan’ or ‘parallel’ crossing (a crossing that can be used on foot and by bike), as per WSCC’s original plans?

And at the Holmbush end, how should the scheme be improved to allow easy, safe journeys to places like Shoreham Academy, Tesco, M&S and onwards towards Brighton?

Tell Tim Loughton what you think

Whatever you think, fill in Tim’s survey (remembering to turn your phone sideways), to help inform the conversation about the future of Upper Shoreham Road. The more we discuss this, the more we all realise there are multiple ways to approach this challenge. Let’s work together to find the best one.

Upper Shoreham Road: Tell WSCC what you think

The temporary cycle lanes on Upper Shoreham Road are nearing completion. Work still remains to complete some gaps and deal with parking blockages, but we hope there will soon be near-continuous cycle lanes to and from the River Adur to the Holmbush roundabout. There’s already been a noticable increase in cycling levels – and this looks set to continue when the project is complete.

Though West Sussex Highways are still working on the scheme, they’ve asked people to feed back, via an online form. The results of this survey will help West Sussex County Council to conduct a review in early November that will help them make important decisions on the future of the scheme.

We have taken a look at the survey wording, and we do think some of the questions are unfortunately put together – not always helping to build an accurate picture of how Shoreham people feel about using the lanes. We’ve told WSCC of our doubts with the form.

We would really encourage you to complete the survey – but taking particular care over the questions that aren’t clear.

It is important that enough of us fill in the form, so here are our tips and thoughts. You should complete the form personally and honestly, but if you find our observations helpful, then here they are:

The first question asks:
“We would like to understand the MAIN PERSPECTIVE from which you are responding to this survey (e.g. pedestrian, cyclist, motorist, business owner etc.).”



You can probably guess why we don’t like this question. We don’t think the people of Shoreham fit into boxes defined by a preferred mode of transport. But this question can’t be skipped – so fill it in as best you can.

Soon after this comes a very important question, that we think is unclearly worded:
“Would you support or oppose the Upper Shoreham Road, Shoreham (2.7km) temporary (or pop-up cycle lane being made permanent in its current format?”

This is tricky. We don’t know exactly how literally the phrase “in its current format” will be interpreted, so our advice is, if you support the lanes in any form (even if you want to see major improvements), we suggest ticking ‘Support’ or ‘Strongly support’.

But importantly, there then comes a question that includes:
“If you would like to provide any additional comments”



Here’s the place where you can really open up with your thoughts. Even if you’re a fan of the cycle lanes in general, which parts aren’t up to scratch? What needs to change? What can be improved?

You’re very likely to have your own thoughts on this, but here are some ideas you may want to consider…

  • Would the lanes be easier and safer if they were wider? The Department for Transport says cycle lanes should be a minimum of 2 metres.
  • Are the ‘advisory’ sections with dashed lines too prone to blockage by parked cars? Would ‘mandatory’ sections with solid white lines discourage illegal parking?
  • What do you think of the orange ‘wands’? If you dislike them, what else would you suggest goes in their place?
  • Does the road surface need repairing, to make for a safer ride?
  • How safe do you feel when passing left turns? Are drivers aware that they musn’t cut across you? What would help here?
  • When passing parking spaces near Southlands shops and Southlands Hospital, how do you feel about riding in ‘door zone‘ of cars? Would you prefer a design that avoids this proximity?
  • By the Red Lion pub, a ‘toucan’ crossing (for people on foot and on bikes), was proposed, but then removed from the plans. Would a proper signalled crossing here be a helpful change, to help journeys to and from the Adur and north Lancing?
  • How about the other end of the cycle lanes, near Holmbush? Is the layout safe and clear? Should the pedestrian crossing be converted to help people make the connection when cycling? And how is the crossing over Stoney Lane?

Near the end comes an invitation to “provide any additional comments. Here’s where you can share anything else that’s on your mind. You might want to mention the difference that the cycle lanes are making to you, and your family.

WSCC’s review of Upper Shoreham Road’s lanes will take place in early November, so we would encourage you to fill in your feedback form as soon as possible.

BEGIN YOUR FEEDBACK HERE

More to say? Why not write?

If you have more to share, then emails can also be useful.

We would suggest emailing your county councillor to tell them how you’ve been using the cycle lanes. Additionally, you may want to copy in your district councillor, and WSCC’s specific email address for this project (but you might want to indicate that you don’t need an additional response from the addresses you copy in).

  • To find your county or district councillors, use WriteToThem.