YOUR news item ‘Call for the Link Road to be joined up to the A21’ calls for vast additional funds to be diverted from the county council’s reserves at a time of swingeing cuts in Adult Social Care, education, youth services and police.
In the 1990s, consultants made clear that the appropriately named Hastings Bypass would create a massive bottleneck at the A21 without a hugely expensive and technically challenging spaghetti junction in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Similar studies showed that stage one of the bypass ie ‘the Link Road’ would not relieve much traffic on the A259, which mostly consists of local work or schools’ traffic.
In any event, if your news item is to be believed, then the link road will be full to capacity by the time the new homes and offices are built – and with a bottleneck at each end.
We are told the link road will bring jobs and homes but will these be for local people or to relieve London overspill due to the prohibitive cost of land in London? The last time London overspill was dumped in Hastings the area quickly became one of the most deprived in Britain.
This is probably what will happen again and the impact will be worse as, this time, there will be no money for the vital social services needed by the incomers. Once again, we locals will pick up the tab long term due to disaffected youth, lack of amenities and rising crime.
And then what after Stage 2 of the bypass is completed and we have barely any services left in the County? Why Stage 3 of course to connect to Guestling because the precedent of road construction in the ANOB will have been set. And, hey presto – the completed Hastings Bypass as per the original 1990s plan and mostly funded from our own council taxes at the expense of care for our children and the elderly!
Well done you clever old politicians. Who says one can’t fool all of the people all of the time?
CAROLINE LWIN, RIBA
Architect and Masterplanner