Traffic measures to bring new lease of life to George Square
Plans to reduce the number of vehicles travelling around George Square went before councillors today (Wednesday, 2 February).
A number of traffic measures to be introduced on an experimental basis will mean up to 1000 fewer cars travelling into the city centre on a daily basis.
These include having a bus gate at the junction of Nelson Mandela Place to allow only buses, taxis, private hire cars and cyclists access along West George Street and onto George Square.
A second bus gate at North Hanover Street south of the entrance to Queen Street Station will reduce the flow of traffic on the north side of the square east of North Hanover Street. The northbound contraflow bus lane north of the Queen Street Station access will no longer be in operation and North Hanover Street will be two way for all traffic from Cathedral Street to the station entrance.
All metered parking will be removed around George Square and there will be no vehicular access to the east side of the square directly outside the City Chambers.
Councillor Jim Coleman, Executive Member for Land and Environmental Services, said the measures would see a 70% reduction in the number of cars travelling along the north side of George Square during peak times.
He said: "These proposals are a huge step towards relieving the congestion affecting the city centre on a day-to-day basis.
"Introducing these measures will unblock the crowded city centre streets, improve air quality and bus journey times by 10%.
"Removing all metered parking will free up the area from the thousands of vehicles that currently come into George Square looking for a place to park as well as improving road safety due to the large volume of vehicles conflicting with high pedestrian activity.
"There are plenty of other places where parking, both on-street and off-street, is available in the city centre.??
A city centre steering group set up as part of the review of traffic management within the city centre, and made up of representatives from the city council, Strathclyde Police, Strathclyde Partnership for Transport, the Taxi Owners Association and the Chamber of Commerce, is in favour of the changes.
Cllr Coleman added: "A six-week public consultation will start in the next couple of months and, depending on its outcome, the new traffic measures will be in force some time in autumn.??
The measures are being introduced on an experimental basis which means they can be withdrawn at anytime. The council is obliged by law to hold a further public consultation before making them permanent.
A copy of the report and map outlining the proposals are available at /councillorsandcommittees/submissiondocuments.asp?submissionid=48146