City centre improvements - phase 2
Wednesday 3 October 2012
Coventry City Council's Cabinet looks set to approve up to £2.8 million investment in the next phase of the transformation of Coventry City Centre when it meets on Tuesday 9 October.
The plan for phase 2 will continue to build on the work completed earlier this year following over £7 million investment (part funded by a grant from the European Regional Development fund) in transforming Broadgate, creating a surface level route between the station and Bull Yard, transforming Gosford Street, creating two new lawns at Bull Yard and outside Holy Trinity Church and improving the setting of some of the city's finest buildings.
Phase 2 which could start as early as next month with completion set for next winter will focus on 12 projects some of which will join up work completed in phase 1.
The main elements include:
High Street and Earl Street to connect Broadgate to Gosford Street - will include removal of the traffic lights, narrowing of carriageways and improvements to pedestrian routes including a new zebra crossing. The existing sandstone paving outside the Council House will be extended down High Street and in front of the Council House.
Pool Meadow - a second access to the bus station will be created off Hales Street between the old fire station and junction 2 of the ring road, along with improvements to Ring Road junction 2. This work will improve bus journey times and reliability along with reducing the amount of buses using Fairfax Street enabling the road width to be reduced and new trees planted - improving the environment for all road users. The traffic lights at Priory street will also be removed, the road widths reduced and new zebra crossing points provided to allow better pedestrian connectivity to key destinations such as Coventry Cathedral. New coach drop off and pick up bays will also be created on Fairfax Street allowing passengers easy use of the facilities at the bus station.
Warwick Lane - the area outside the Central Methodist hall will be levelled to allow a pavement café. This work will complement the transformation of Bull Yard.
Belgrade junction - improvements to this busy junction to improve traffic flows, reducing congestion and making it easier for pedestrians to cross.
Little Park Street / New Union Street - the removal of traffic light controlled junctions in phase 1 has led to traffic flowing much more freely around the city centre but with the knock on of increased delays in areas where signals still operate. The proposal for this junction is to remove the traffic lights and replace with a roundabout junction similar to the one now running well at Warwick Road and Greyfriars Road.
Other smaller projects will include areas of new paving, more trees being planted and new public art.
Councillor Lindsley Harvard, Cabinet Member for City Services said,
"Over the last 18 months the city centre has been transformed, with the new walking route from the station right through Broadgate to Ironmonger Square looking particularly impressive.
"Broadgate is a fantastic new space for people to walk through and congregate in. It has already had a positive impact on the numbers of people visiting the city centre - boosted by 10% during the fortnight the international market was held there. The regular farmers markets have pulling in the crowds too - and despite the rain, acts and the audience enjoyed Godiva in the Square.
"But we are far from done - in fact the success of phase 1 has inspired us to get on and plan phase 2. People have told me that they are beginning to feel a new pride in the city centre. We want to build on this by investing in areas that link some of the competed work, extending improvements of the highways environment for the benefit of pedestrians and road users alike. Our aim is to make the city-centre environment safer, more attractive, pedestrian-friendly and courteous, with improved rather than impeded traffic flows.
"The Olympics and the 50th anniversary of the New Cathedral brought visitors to the City and they were impressed. I believe this work will make the City look even more impressive and thereby bode well for our attempts to attract more business and beneficial development."