A community demonstration to oppose plans for an IKEA at New Monks Farm will highlight residents’ concerns about pollution levels and traffic congestion.
Adur Residents Environment Action (AREA), which has organised the event on Saturday, May 12, believes local infrastructure ‘simply will not cope’ with the proposed 35,000sqm furniture store and 600 new homes in Lancing.
Chairman Barb O’Kelly said the A27 was already highly congested and polluted.
She said: “IKEA belongs in a business park, not on a flood plain which is vital to the area’s drainage.
“Many people are deeply worried about the health problems that the growing levels of pollution will bring and that the traffic congestion will create further problems for commuters and businesses.”
She added: “This is not an objection to new development or housing, but it needs to be sustainable, needs to have the infrastructure and should not be to the detriment of our health and environment.”
Supporters are invited to join the march next Saturday at 10am from one of two starting points – Grinstead Lane on the corner of Mash Barn Lane or the Shoreham Toll Bridge.
The march will end up at the A27 Withy Layby at 10.30am.
There will be another protest event at Shoreham Market by Coronation Green at approximately 11.30am.
The group said: “We need this to be an amazing show of support to show our councillors that we reject the proposed development plans.”
AREA also said that further proposed developments in the district – such as the 1,100 new flats along the A259 in Shoreham, a major commercial development at Shoreham Airport and 520 homes in West Sompting – would further add to the traffic and air pollution on the A27.
A spokesman for New Monks Farm Development has previously said: “The proposed developments will provide 600 much needed new homes, 30 per cent of which will be affordable, create over 870 new jobs and add £11.5m annually to the local economy.”
Rival groups supporting opposing sides of the IKEA debate have been set up on social media.
The Yes to IKEA Facebook group currently has 121 members, while the No to IKEA group is liked by 47 people.
To view the New Monks Farm application in full, search for AWDM/0961/17 on Adur District Council’s planning website.