DELAYS of more than 40 seconds are expected on the seafront if a T-junction replaces the aquarium roundabout, councillors heard.

Brighton and Hove City Council has started work on the first phase of the Valley Gardens project, which will re-route traffic from St Peter’s Church to Edward Street.

Now people will be asked for their views on plans for the final stage, from Edward Street to the Palace Pier, which are yet to be finalised.

Tory councillor Lee Wares told the transport committee the council’s preferred design, costing £7.3million, would slow traffic down on the A259 by more than 40 seconds.

“When we looked at phase one and two we got quite vexed about one or two seconds,” he said. “Now we’re looking at 40 plus ... all the way along to Rottingdean.”

It involves creating a public space to the south-east of the Royal Pavilion, more pedestrian crossings on the seafront, and a crossing for cyclists.

The signal junction at North Street/Old Steine would also be removed.

Conservative councillor Joe Miller raised concerns about the loss of the roundabout by the SeaLife Centre and Palace Pier.

He also warned councillors about the impact of traffic along Madeira Drive.

Cllr Miller said: “Transport models can be wonderful but they do not take into account human factors.


“Removing the roundabout at the aquarium and pier will have a disastrous impact on the inland corridor.

“I will eat my hat if I’m proved wrong.”

Concerns were raised about how the scheme would work for pedestrians and cyclists. A public consultation will run from Monday with an exhibition at Hove Town Hall, moving to Jubilee Library from November 1 to 21.

The committee’s four Labour and two Green councillors voted for the chosen design to go to a public consultation, while the four Conservatives voted against.