Pedestrianisation of Bold Street on cards

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Bold Street pedestrianisation plans. Pic © Liverpool City Council

Bold Street and the Ropewalks district look set to undergo a multi-million pound makeover as plans to pedestrianise one of the city centre’s key roads go under public scrutiny.

Liverpool City Council set up a public consultation at FACT yesterday, with people studying proposals to fully pedestrianise Bold Street and transform the Ropewalks area with additional seating and trees.

The scheme, if approved, is anticipated to begin in January 2019 and be completed by November that year.

The Liverpool City Region authority is providing £3m in funding, with a further £1.5m coming from the council, collected from residential and commercial development in the city centre.

Phase one of the makeover includes reversing the one-way traffic in Seel Street, with later developments planned for Wood Street, Fleet Street, Slater Street and Colquitt Street.

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Councillor Ann O’Bryne, Deputy Mayor of Liverpool, said: “Pedestrianising the full length of Bold Street has the potential to cement this amazingly colourful, vibrant street as one of the most dynamic in Britain.”

The proposals to enhance the existing café culture and access to independent traders on Bold Street have been met with mixed reactions, with some feeling it will be good for their businesses.

Lily Chin, Sales and Events Coordinator of Love Thy Neighbour, said: “We would love for the plans to happen. It would be beneficial for us and many small businesses and it would also be good for the city.”

Liverpool’s Bold Street. Pic by Owen Swift © JMU Journalism

By contrast, Liverpool resident, Miriam Chhina, said: “I don’t think the whole city centre should be pedestrianised. It is part of Bold Street’s charm that you can drive down it. It gives it quite a retro appeal, making it a bit different from the rest of the town. The bottom end already is pedestrianised.”

“Tourists love Liverpool and it’s nice for them to be able to drive down our streets, possibly en route to elsewhere and glimpse our culture. It’s the vibe and the atmosphere.”

Chris Hurst, a 33-year-old private hire cab driver, stated: “To me it seems that these decisions are made by people who don’t use the city regularly. On paper it all looks amazing, but in reality it will be a nightmare, in my opinion.”

About Daisy Scott, JMU Journalism