WORK has started on a major improvement project that will improve conditions for pedestrians and buses in Eastbourne town centre.
East Sussex County Council and Eastbourne Borough Council’s multi-million pound Eastbourne Town Centre Improvement Scheme will include pavement widening and the installation of new bus stops, street furniture and street lights.
The first phase of the work, which began on September 1, sees changes to Eastbourne Train Station’s forecourt making it accessible to station licenced cabs only. All other taxis will use a new larger customer drop off and pick up point in Ashford Road, under the new station canopy.
As well as creating a larger and more efficient taxi rank, the redesign will improve pedestrian access to the Enterprise Centre.
Additionally a new bus stop will be incorporated in the station forecourt area, enabling easy access to and from the station for public transport users.
These combined changes mean that it will no longer be possible to access the station car park from Terminus Road but a new two way access point has been constructed off Commercial Road.
The first phase of the work is expected to be completed by early December.
Cllr Carl Maynard, Lead Member for Transport and Environment, said: “This is a really exciting scheme which has the backing of bus, rail operators and taxi companies as well as the support of the owners of the Enterprise Centre.
“This stage will realise the council’s ambition to transform Eastbourne train station into a more cohesive transport hub”.
Cllr David Tutt, leader of Eastbourne Borough Council, added: “”I am delighted that work is commencing to improve our town centre. This combined with the plans Legal and General have for the Arndale will be transformational, providing a very pleasant environment for people to shop.”
Work will also begin this month on the construction of the next section of the Horsey Way cycle route to be installed in Ashford Road. This cycle route is being constructed in stages and, when complete, will provide a safe cycling facility between Eastbourne Railway Station and Langney roundabout.
The section of cycleway between Ringwood Road and Lottbridge Drove has already been completed and the remaining sections are planned to be completed by early 2017.
Commuters cycling into Eastbourne will be able to take advantage of the new cycling storage facilities constructed at Eastbourne Train Station.
The Enterprise Centre and the station will be accessible throughout the duration of the work.
The second phase of the works, along Terminus Road, has been programmed to avoid disruption at Christmas and will follow from January to August 2016. It includes the repaving of the carriageway and footways, introduction of small flowerbeds and modern lighting, removal of old bus stops and significant widening of footways.