STEPS must be taken to ensure the infrastructure for a 2,500-home development is sorted out before any homes are built,
That is the message from Whiteley Town Council which is campaigning to have the main road of the development built before the homnes.
Proposals for the development in the north of Whiteley went on show last week.
And, although the council is in favour of the plans, it says infrastructure needs to be dealt with first.
Councillor Mike Evans, chairman of the council, said: ‘At the council, we have always campaigned for the road to the south of the development to be built first.
‘We have campaigned for this for years because we feel there must be another access.
‘One of the problems at the moment is for people living near the shopping centre.
‘If there is an accident between the roundabout near Marks and Spencer and the Zurich building, no one can get out of Whiteley.
‘So we feel this road from Bluebell Way to Botley Road is crucial and should be built first.’
At the moment, the proposals have the road started in the first year but fully connected to Botley Road in year three of the development.
Cllr Evans added: ‘We have spoken to Winchester City Council and the developers about our concerns so hopefully they will listen.’
Residents in Whiteley also think the road needs to be built first to avoid traffic problems when the first phase of homes are completed.
Dennis Hughes went to exhibition at Meadowside Lesiure Centre, in Whiteley.
He said: ‘Traffic is a problem in Whiteley so this main road is needed.
‘I do have some concerns people might use it as a rat run to avoid going through the development but another route is definitely needed early on.’
As part of the development, which will have 3,500 homes, primary and secondary schools as well as community centres and sport pitches, Whiteley Town Council is hoping Whiteley Way will be improved.
As previously reported in The News a bid made to the Solent LEP for a £14m grant was successful. Cllr Evans hopes the money will be used on Whiteley Way.
He said: ‘As part of the development, we hope to improve Whiteley Way with money from the Solent LEP.
‘It is important to get the infrastructure right.’