Haywards Heath Relief Road safety fears

JPMT. Mike Ward is concerned that at the East side of the A272 link road that there should be a pavement next to the road to allow people to walk up to the Birch roundabout

JPMT. Mike Ward is concerned that at the East side of the A272 link road that there should be a pavement next to the road to allow people to walk up to the Birch roundabout

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Concerns have been raised over the safety of pedestrians on part of the Haywards Heath relief road.

Residents of Birch Avenue are concerned that on the east side of the A272 link road there is no pavement.

This means that people wanting to walk up to the Birch roundabout have to cross over multiple times.

Another worry is the lack of signs notifying drivers of pedestrians.

Resident Mike Ward said: “There is a footpath to encourage residents of New Farm Way to walk to the A272 which, after 25 metres, stops.”

As the section of the relief road is a private road it is not the responsibility of West Sussex County Council but that of developer Crest Nicholson.

A spokesperson from the county council said: “The issue of pedestrians walking alongside the road has been raised with Crest and their on-site engineer. There is no pedestrian infrastructure adjacent to the relief road but there is a pedestrian link to Hurstwood Lane.”

A spokesperson for Crest Nicholson said: “The design of relief road, which has been approved by both Mid Sussex District Council and West Sussex County Council, only includes footway from the entrance of the proposed Woodside development to a safe crossing point with traffic islands. This leads to the existing pavements of Hurstwood Lane.

“To warn pedestrians from walking up the relief road in the immediate future we are installing warning signs in appropriate locations as a temporary measure until the relief road is fully open.”

Mr Ward said: “If they are installing temporary signs until the relief is open, then surely there must be an even stronger case for them when the relief road is fully open.”

Mid Sussex district councillor John de Mierre said: “I and my colleagues on the district and town councils have said there are issues to be sorted out on the relief road and have made urgent representations to the county council as Highways Authority on them.

“We have asked for a meeting with WSCC and the contractors to see what can be done and hope this can be arranged as soon as possible.”

Residents would also like to see a speed reduction on the road as at present they feel it is not safe for those walking on the side of the road.

The Haywards Heath relief road has six stages

Stages One to Five runs from Tylers Green to Rocky Lane, and requires a new railway bridge over the London to Brighton line. It is linked with the development at Bolnore Village.

Stage Six runs from Rocky Lane to the A272, Lewes Road, and is linked to the development of the St Francis Hospital site.

The completion date of the relief road is December 31, 2016.