31 January 2012

Plans to improve traffic flows in the centre of Northampton as part of a wider project to regenerate the town have gone on show.

Northamptonshire County Council is proposing several changes to the road network in the Bridge Street, Drapery and St John Street area.

The plans have been in consideration for a number of months and will complement the new bus interchange and new student accommodation.

However, as temporary traffic arrangements introduced following the fire at the former Angel Hotel in Bridge Street, act in a similar way to what is proposed, it was thought to be an ideal time to showcase the new layout.

Cllr Andre Gonzalez De Savage, county council cabinet member for infrastructure and public protection, said: “There’s a great deal planned for the town centre over the next few years so it’s important that we get the traffic flows right to make sure everything works together.

“What we’re proposing will be of a very high design quality and will greatly enhance the appearance of the town, fitting in with the marvellous historic buildings in the area.

“It’s important that we showcase these proposals to make sure everyone is comfortable with what we’re planning and that we can fully explain how it will all work.”

The proposals include:

• Widening footways in Bridge Street to benefit daytime shoppers and creating a pinch point, where the road narrows to one lane. All traffic will be bale to travel southbound (down the hill), while only buses will be allowed to travel in the opposite direction on a priority basis.

• A new signal controlled pedestrian crossing at the southern end of Bridge Street will replace the two existing signal controlled junctions at the Commercial Street and St Johns Street. It is envisaged that traffic flows on the “Plough gyratory” will be improved.

• St Giles Square to open as a one-way street to all traffic (including buses and taxis), heading westwards into George Row. Cyclists will still be able to travel eastwards.

• Vehicles would be able to travel along Gold Street towards All Saints Church and Drapery and Bridge Street.

The exhibition will be on display until February 10 in Sessions House Reception, County Hall.