Liverpool Council unveils details of project to make city centre easier to navigate

Liverpool City Centre Connectivity scheme includes a yet-to-be-approved plan to create a bus Hub on Old Haymarket which has attracted significant local opposition. Tony McDonough reports

Victoria Street
Work on Liverpool City Centre Connectivity scheme starts in January

 

Work will begin in January on a multi-million pound scheme to make Liverpool city centre easier to navigate for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists.

The Liverpool City Council project includes a yet-to-be-approved plan to create a bus Hub on Old Haymarket which has attracted significant local opposition.

The council has appointed GRAHAM Construction to undertake the first package of works for the Liverpool City Centre Connectivity (LCCC) scheme which will focus on re-engineering major routes from the city’s commercial district through to the city’s retail and knowledge districts.

The works will begin with the widening of pavements, removal of bus layovers as well as tree planting and new public realm features in Victoria Street, running from North John Street to the Queensway Tunnel.

Expected to complete at the end of October these works will complement the new Victoria Street Car Park, which opened last December, and the refurbishment of the Metquarter retail and leisure hub.

The other elements of this first package will see:

  • A new city centre bus hub on Old Haymarket, which is the subject of a planning application. It has been estimated the new hub together with re-routed bus services would take away 700,000 dead miles and 2,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide by providing a permanent layover facility. However, the plan has met with local opposition. Labour councillor Nick Small claims it will lead to traffic chaos.
  • Improvement works to Brownlow Hill to support the city council’s masterplan for the Knowledge Quarter Gateway which is being designed to better connect the edge of the retail district to the city centre’s universities, as well as the council’s £1bn Paddington Village development. These works will start in April and will be completed at start of September.
  • Improvements to Tithebarn Street and Moorfields – which will mirror the works previously carried out to Castle Street and Bixteth Street to enhance Liverpool’s commercial district. These works will run from April to November.
  • A new, improved city coach park by expanding the existing facility on Riverside Drive to accommodate 30 vehicles. Wok on this element will begin in July 2019 and complete in November.

The LCCC scheme is one of the flagship highways projects in the city council’s wider £500m Better Roads programme, which also includes a £100m programme to upgrade the city’s North Liverpool corridor.

Councillor James Noakes, Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, said: “The phenomenal growth of Liverpool city centre over the past two decades has created many new challenges and new opportunities.

“With a growing residential population, a huge rise in visitors and major developments now taking shape, how we navigate around the city centre needs a radical rethink in key locations and some major improvements.

“This new connectivity scheme addresses many of our current and future needs to improve the city centre welcome and provide an experience befitting a world class city.”

The LCCC scheme will receive £38.4m from the Single Investment Fund (SIF) with council match funding of £8.7m.

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