This post was first published by MyLondon on 11/02/2019.
Croydon High Street is to be pedestrianised permanently later this year
Businesses say the practice closure of the High Street has been a big success.
Croydon High Street is to become a permanent pedestrian zone after a successful pilot scheme.
The High Street has been closed to all vehicles, including buses and taxis, between Katharine Street and Park Street for the past year.
The trial was due to come to an end in April, but Croydon Council announced on Thursday (February 7) the traffic restrictions are to be made permanent.
They say the change has benefited the town’s night time trade and increased football to and from North End.
Since the scheme started, the road has hosted events such as Street Live, a free programme of music, dance and theatre performances, as well as a play street and screenings of Wimbledon.
As part of the pedestrianisation, bus routes were altered to go through Katherine Street and St George’s Walk. The taxi rank was also moved to Park Street.
A spokesman for Croydon Council said: “The permanent closure of High Street will begin in April. This will allow the road to temporarily reopen for traffic rerouted by the closure of St George’s Walk for the R&F Queen’s Square development.
“This reopening will take place over two weeks in the middle of April, during the Easter holidays, and will preserve bus routes through Croydon.
“Signs with details of the reopening will be displayed on High Street nearer the time.”
The works are due to be paid for as part of the Croydon Growth Zone project, a £525m scheme by the council in partnership with TfL and the Greater London Authority.
A motion recommending the the experimental order permanent was approved by the Traffic Management Advisory Committee on Tuesday (February 5).
Councillor Stuart King, cabinet member for environment and transport, said: “There has been a fantastic array of performances and events entertaining scores of residents, shoppers and visitors over the past year.
“It has been a pleasure to see this public space grow and evolve and I’m looking forward to seeing the future events it will host.”
Two eye-catching pieces of street art have also been created on both ends of the road since the pedestrianisation.
The section of the High Street which has been pedestrianised is home to many of the town centre’s bars and restaurants, including the Grants entertainment complex, Dice Bar, Nandos and several others.
What will be changed?
As part of the project, the following changes to the town centre road layout were made:
- Park Street was made one way up to its junction with St George’s Walk
- All buses that used to travel along High Street were made to instead travel via St George’s Walk
- The taxi rank on High Street was relocated to Park Street
- The two bus stops on Park Street was relocated further up Park Street to the previous location of the bus stand
- The bus lane previously on Park Street was removed to make way for all general traffic
- The zebra crossing and motorcycle bays on St George’s Walk were moved to allow room for a new bus stand which was moved from Park Street