Letter: Three Bridges - a railway station fit for the future

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As a steam enthusiast I nevertheless welcome the fact that my current rail journeys to London and Brighton involve far less dirt, danger and delay.

As a steam enthusiast I nevertheless welcome the fact that my current rail journeys to London and Brighton involve far less dirt, danger and delay.

Whilst not suiting all users of the Three Bridges forecourt area the intended plans to use Section 106 community payback resources are largely improving on the current access.

On behalf of the Steering Group of Three Bridges Forum I must raise the concern of residents impacted by commuter parking pressures. Controlled Parking Zones, yellow lining etc have helped residents but made it more difficult for commuters to park. There will be further restriction of all day parking on nearby roads currently used by commuters. The welcome improvements at the station, better rail services and growing population all make it inevitable that the station will be even more heavily used.

Upon the completion of the proposed Option One will we subsequently find that increasing commuter parking at the station has been made more or less likely?

The current footprint of commuter parking at the station could be doubled if a single deck second tier was built. Crawley Town Hall is 50 years old, and had a doubled car park area added. We see opposite County Oak the employee parking deck provided by Thales. The best example is a similar relatively cheap system built parking deck recently opened at the Southern station in East Grinstead.

During the current Three Bridges station consultation are rail user groups keen to increase station parking, what are the costs and advantages of such a deck, what joined up thinking exists between Crawley Borough Council, West Sussex County Council and Southern? Will the old chestnut of electric power plant alteration make such a plan impossible? A short underground relocation to remove a pylon or two could have been integrated into the current works. Pylon supply is £2million per kilometre installed. There are plans nationally to relocate pylons in sensitive locations to underground at £20million per km.

Three Bridges Station was to be given better facilities for the Olympics users and would be a “legacy” bonus. Let Crawley finally get a station that works well into the future.

Dave Hathaway, Three Bridges Forum