So the latest plans for pedestrianising the centre of Rugby are out – as reported by the Rugby Advertiser.
For a cost of £1million, we would get…
- The bit of Church Street and North Street between Regent Street and Chestnut Field will become a bus & taxi only lane during the daytime
- A slightly larger ‘civic space’ around the Clock Tower
And that’s it. The picture that has been released and shown in the Advertiser site only shows the change in a little part at the top, with the most prominent part being the already pedestrianised area to the south of the Clock Tower (shown empty but will presumably still be used for the Market).
It is not a pedestrianisation if buses and taxis still go along the road.
It is about 150 yards long, meaning the cost is over £6,500 per yard, which is more that the bypass cost even after the delays and overspend.
It will shift traffic into Park Road, Regent Place and Albert Street, and affect roads all around the town centre which are already congested at peak times.
It will make it harder to get to the car parking around the town.
There are ways that the town centre could be made more attractive, and to link the ‘Independent Quarter’ to the north of Church Street with the rest of the town centre for pedestrians. What about these?
- Pedestrianise between Regent Street and Albert Street, creating a square in front of St. Andrews Church.
- A proper set of bus stops or (radical!) a bus ‘station’ in the town would help.
- Perhaps not easing through more out-of-town development with the Debenhams at Elliots Field which will suck custom away from the ‘Independent Quarter’ boutique-y shops