Consultation opens for plans to boost city centre active travel

Public consultation is launching today (Friday 26 March) on plans to create a better and more accessible route for walking and cycling between key Manchester city centre transport hubs.

£4m has been secured for work to create easier, safer and more attractive ways for people to move between Piccadilly, Victoria and Deansgate stations on foot or by cycle.  

The new scheme, which is supported by the Department for Transport’s Active Travel Fund, focuses on areas that are not already covered by other walking and cycling improvement schemes along Deansgate and in the Northern Quarter.

By expanding the area across the city centre where pedestrians have priority and encouraging more people to travel around the city by cycle, the scheme will support the central aim of the draft City Centre Transport Strategy, which is for 90 per cent of all morning peak trips to the city centre to be made on foot, by cycle or using public transport by 2040.   Accessibility will be key to the scheme's design, ensuring that the needs of people with disabilities, including those using wheelchairs and mobility scooters, are fully taken into account.

People are being asked to comment on improvements for four locations, which could include new segregated cycle lanes, bus stop bypasses, reduced on-street parking, plus junction upgrades, signalised cycling crossings over tram lines and careful use of lighting, to improve safety at night.

The four locations are:-

  • Deansgate (north) - Victoria Bridge Street to Blackfriars Street
  • Deansgate (south) – Quay Street to Whitworth Street junction
  • Whitworth Street to Albion Street junction
  • Whitworth Street / Aytoun Street junction and along Aytoun Street to Portland Street.

The proposals are available to read and comment on at until Friday 14 May.  Online engagement events will be held on Tuesday 27 April, Tuesday 11 and Thursday 13 May (all 6:30 - 7:30pm). 

Executive Member for the Environment, Planning and Transport, Councillor Angeliki Stogia, said: “Our city centre is growing rapidly, with the potential for 100,000 more jobs and 50,000 more homes to be created in the next two decades. That’s why we need to think about our streets differently and create more room for people to walk and cycle.  This will help meet the city's targets for cleaner air and to become zero-carbon by 2038 at the latest.  Providing more and better space for people will also be central to our economic recovery from the pandemic.  

“Now we need to know what changes would make it more likely for you to walk or cycle on this route, so that we can provide a scheme with lasting environmental and health benefits for everyone who works, lives in and visits the city centre.”

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