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Town Centre and South Street Consultation Press Release

Town Centre and South Street Consultation Press Release

Bridport Town Council wants to hear from people on town centre traffic issues and particularly on whether people would support a trial closure and pedestrianisation of South Street.

Councillor Sarah Williams, Leader of Bridport Town Council says “ the Town Council has agreed to undertake a consultation exercise on town centre traffic issues including whether there should be a trial closure and pedestrianisation of the top of South Street. A trial closure is being considered to fully assess the impact of the closure of the road. However, before a decision is taken on whether to apply to the County Council for a trial closure, the Town Council wants to get people’s views on whether they would support such a trial. The consultation also asks questions on town centre speed limits and what people consider most needs to be improved in relation to the town centre and traffic:

The consultation will start online on 7 August and there will also be hard copies of the questionnaire available at the Tourist Information Centre, the Council Offices at Mountfield and in the Bridport Library. The consultation runs until 1 October.

More information and the consultation questionnaire will be available from 7 August on the Town Council’s web site www.bridport-tc.gov.uk

Councillor Williams added “This is a chance for people to have their say before we decide whether to make any recommendations to Dorset County Council on these issues. The County Council, as the Highway Authority, would have to agree any proposals.

Background

Bridport Town Centre Consultation Q&A

What has the Town Council agreed?

Bridport Town Council has agreed that a consultation exercise be undertaken on town centre issues, including seeking views on a trial closure of South Street and town centre speed limits.

Why is it consulting on South Street?

The possible closure/pedestrianisation of South Street is an issue that is often raised with the Town Council and the Council included a proposal to consult on the options for South Street in its current Town Plan.

Why is a trial closure of South Street referred to in the consultation?

The Town Council feels that to accurately assess the impact of the closure of South Street, a temporary trial closure for up to 3 months should be considered. However, before a decision is taken on whether to apply to the County Council for a trial closure, it was agreed that a consultation should be undertaken to seek views on the proposal. The results would enable the Town Council to assess the strength of feeling and support, before any further work is undertaken.

Can the Town Council close South Street ?

Dorset County Council, as the Highway Authority, has to approve any highway or traffic changes. Should the Town Council decide to make any recommendations on South Street or any aspect of town centre traffic, these would need to be approved by Dorset County Council.

When does the consultation start?

The consultation will start on August 7 and run for 8 weeks until 1 October. The questionnaire can be completed online (at www.bridport-tc.gov.uk) and hard copies will also be available in the Tourist Information Centre, Bridport Library and Mountfield, where the completed forms can be returned.

After the consultation?

The results will be considered by the Town Council in October, to decide whether to make a recommendation to Dorset County Council. If a trial closure if proposed and this is supported by the County Council, there would then be further consultation. The aim, if there is support, would be to put a trial closure* in place sometime during March to May 2018. (*Any closure of South Street would be from the junction of Gundry Lane to the Town Hall junction. There would be access for deliveries to businesses/residents, emergency vehicles and vehicles used by people with disabilities).

How much will a trial closure cost?

If it goes ahead, it is estimated that the order making and signage could cost between £20,000 and £50,000 but the costs will be confirmed when the Town Council receives the results of the consultation in October.

Can I find out more? Please contact Bob Gillis, Bridport Town Clerk

r.gillis@bridport-tc.gov.uk 01308 456722 or see: www.bridport-tc.gov.uk

August 2017

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