By Kelly Wickham
Residents in Chichester have said they would like to see more entertainment in the city in a recent survey.
The results of the initial survey for the Chichester Neighbourhood Plan have been released with an excellent response with over 1,650 surveys completed.
The results show support for environmental policies and preservation of Chichester’s historic character, alongside support for more entertainment and a vibrant city centre.
A large number of submissions and representations were also received from outside the survey including letters, meetings and social media contacts from groups and individuals.
“This is a brilliant result and as mayor and chairman of the Chichester Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group, I would like to thank everybody who took the time and trouble to complete the questionnaire,” said mayor Cllr Richard Plowman.
“Thanks also to the Chichester Post for including it in the paper. I am determined that the neighbourhood plan should be a people’s plan for Chichester and we will keep you involved every step along the way.
“Keep those great ideas coming as the next stage is working parties putting together the plans for the main topics and issues identified in the consultation.”
Among ideas for things that the city needed, people answering the survey said they wanted a Primark shop, music venue, a concert hall and a department store.
Surveys also said cheaper parking, an ice rink, affordable housing, cycle routes, more things for younger people and better bus services were needed.
Over 70 per cent of people who filled in the survey said yes to the question, would you support building a road bridge or underpass across the Basin Road rail crossing, so that traffic would not have to queue waiting for train gates to go up?
Just under 90 per cent agreed that new housing should have environmentally friendly features (eg solar panels and electric car recharging points).
Over half the respondents, 57.64 per cent said Chichester should have a nightclub and 53.86 per cent said there were too many coffee shops in the city centre.
when it came to parking, over half the surveys (51.35 per cent) which were filled said that Chichester should keep the existing parking to minimise impact on residents and businesses, compared to 29.78 per cent who said the council should increase parking to support the growing population and 10.07 per cent of people said they felt parking should be reduced to force people out of their cars.
The extra submissions sent to the council will also feed into the next steps. All comments and suggestions will be looked at as the plan is taken forward. The next stage is to look into how the issues supported by residents can be taken forward into projects or policies.
This will require some technical work to be carried out.
Further consultation will then take place on options for implementing these projects and policies, and to assess the level of support for new suggestions and issues raised.
More information about the Chichester Neighbourhood Plan can be found on the Chichester City Council website: chichestercity.gov.uk/neighbourhood-plan
Anyone who wishes to register for updates about the Neighbourhood Plan should send their email address to firstname.lastname@example.org.