THE final version of Glasgow’s City Centre Transport Plan (CCTP) is due to be approved by councillors.
The plan’s key proposals include a People First Zone — bounded by Hope Street, Cowcaddens Road, North Hanover / Glassford Street and Howard Street — where people are given priority over vehicles, with restrictions on private vehicles to minimize city centre congestion.
Various other confirmed and aspirational projects will help deliver the aims of the plan, including changes at George Square; the wider Avenues and Avenues Plus programme; the High Street corridor; transformation work on the Broomielaw and Clyde Waterfront; people-friendly streets; and the Charing Cross M8 cap scheme.
The final version of the plan was presented to the city council’s environment, sustainability and carbon reduction committee this week and will now be referred to the city administration committee for final approval.
The council say the plan will provide a clear framework for transport decision-making in Glasgow city centre and help make it a place where everyone can thrive, aligning with the transport strategy for the wider city, and will replace the current (2014-24) city centre transport strategy.
The results of public consultation on a draft plan informed the final version, with 724 people completing the survey and more than 3,000 comments submitted.
The consultation indicated broad support, with 71 per cent of respondents strongly agreeing with the objectives of the plan; and even stronger support for making the city centre more accessible to all, including pedestrians, cyclists and users of public transport.
Changes to the draft were made as a result of the consultation, including the commissioning of research by the council, who will work with Transport Scotland and relevant stakeholders, on how to reduce the impact of the M8 on the city centre.
Further consultation will also take place with the business community on the use of advertising boards on the footway as a result of concerns raised by disabled groups.
Other changes include a review of servicing in the city centre, with a focus on deliveries and the needs of trades workers; consideration will be given to providing more shelter as part of major public realm improvements; and education and enforcement will take place to minimise conflict between cyclists and pedestrians.
Over the course of the 10-year life of the plan, it is expected that there will be a 23 per cent reduction in car trips to/from the city centre, a 43 per cent increase in walking, a 300 per cent increase in cycling and a corresponding 16 per cent decrease in CO2 emissions from city centre traffic.
Public realm work of the kind that will take place under the plan has been shown to increase retail sales by up to 30 per cent. Retail vacancy was 17 per cent lower after similar improvements in other cities.
Councillor Angus Millar, convener for climate, transport, Glasgow Green Deal and city centre recovery at Glasgow City Council, said: “This plan sets out how we can get to and about our city centre in the future, laying the groundwork for an accessible, greener and more successful city centre.
“The proposals for a People First Zone in a core of the city centre, restricting through-traffic for private vehicles, will see people take priority and allow for more attractive, welcoming streets.
“Taken together with our wider plans for city centre regeneration and our work to pursue better, greener public transport options for Glaswegians, the City Centre Transport Plan will help guide the transformation of our city centre in the coming years.”