Work Set To Start On Improving Dunstable High Street

THE VINE MAGAZINE – LOCAL NEWS:
Central Bedfordshire Council is set to commence its planned improvements to Dunstable High Street

Work Set To Start On Improving Dunstable High Street

Work Set To Start On Improving Dunstable High Street

Work Set To Start On Improving Dunstable High Street
Work Set To Start On Improving Dunstable High Street

 

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Central Bedfordshire Council is set to commence its planned improvements to Dunstable High Street, with work starting next week. The project was given approval to proceed at this week’s Traffic Management Committee.

Previously the council ran two consultations to ask the public for their ideas on how to improve Dunstable High Street. They asked what would encourage the public to spend more time in the High Street, and how they could make crossing it safer and more accessible for pedestrians and cyclists.

Work Set To Start On Improving Dunstable High Street

In response, the public said they wanted to prioritise pedestrians, as they are the ones spending money in the shops and businesses. So the council is implementing a boulevard-style high street with cafes on wider pavements, more greenery, and with more public areas and benches.

Work Set To Start On Improving Dunstable High Street

The improvements will take around 12 weeks. Initially the council is starting by removing the railings and some other unnecessary street clutter from the High Street, so that pedestrians can get to different areas around town. The work includes four ‘gateway’ features at key locations to help to define the town centre, and to indicate to drivers that they are entering a pedestrian-friendly area.

Work Set To Start On Improving Dunstable High Street

The council will also be making improvements to the Middle Row shopping area. There will be new cycle stands, and feature lighting to improve safety and make the area more attractive in the evening. There will also be new trees and planting areas that have built-in drainage features to help prevent the flooding that the town has sometimes suffered from. And the local market traders will be able to benefit from better access to electricity points.

Councillor Nigel Young, Executive Member for Regeneration at Central Bedfordshire Council, said: “We want to build upon Dunstable’s existing heritage to create a new and improved High Street. We want to make it people-orientated, with the feel of a market town that caters to the needs of both locals and visitors.

“We want to move away from the High Street being effectively a dual carriageway road. We’ll be widening the pavements to help slow traffic down and give the area back to shoppers. And we’re removing the guard rails and changing the road crossings so that they are at the points where people do want them.

“All the changes will make a noticeable improvement to the town, and we will continue to bid for more funding, so that we can undertake further improvements next year, including to the layout of the main crossroads.”

Highways England has provided £1.5million of funding for Dunstable in recognition of the impact the heavy traffic had on the town when the High Street was the A5 and a major route to and from the M1 motorway. This money is allowing Central Bedfordshire Council to start making these much needed enhancements to the High Street.

You can read about the plans at www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/yourhighstreet.


The Vine Dunstable - August September 2018 - Issue 84 COVER

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Work Set To Start On Improving Dunstable High Street

Work Set To Start On Improving Dunstable High Street