There is a lot going on in 2013 with Arun and the District, The Arun local Plan will be finalised and put to an independent examiner for agreement, (the local plan is a template for development until 2026 involving Housing, workspace, Economic activity , Roads and transportation) Housing numbers to be built per year will be a key element to the plan and thanks to representations by Worthing Borough Council and Chichester District Council the pressure is for Arun to increase annual numbers from our preference of 400 houses per year to the 565 that was in the South East Plan.
In fact the evidence is pressuring us to go even higher, something the residents of Arun do not want and something I am currently minded to resist.
The leisure Strategy is being debated by Full Council on the 20th of March and this will decide the future of Leisure sports and culture in the District, we commissioned the strategy to give Leisure in the District a sustainable future for the next 50 years, but this will involve difficult decisions after wide spread consultation. Key issues are the future of the Windmill Theatre, The Littlehampton Swimming & Sports Centre, A possible new leisure centre in Littlehampton, Investment in The Arun Leisure Centre, The Swansea Bowling green in Bognor, New Community Facilities and the streetscape in Arundel.
Bognor Regis regeneration will be decided this year with the possible £40 million pound regeneration of the town centre by St Modwin's, with new shops, restaurants, a hotel and a mini-plex, cinema. this has been out to extensive public consultation which has resulted polarised views. I believe this is a one in a generation opportunity for Bognor Regis and if the local community fails to grasp it they will subject the town to 10 years economic malaise.
The North Bognor relief road started construction on the 15th of January and this will speed journey times on the A259 and give a viable alternative to the A27 at times of stress. The road is being financed by the house builders developing Felpham and North Bersted and will cross the A29 north of Bognor. This has been in the offering for a number of years, but has only recently been triggered by house building passing the required number within the development agreement, this is a sure sign that the economy is starting to motor. A positive note for a year of change. Until next month I wish you a prosperous February. email: Pauldendle@aol.com