The Stepney Bank street trial took place on the 7th and 8th of November. This involved allowing downhill traffic only and using the space this freed up to show how we could create a more attractive entrance to the Valley outside the Tanners, widen footpaths for people travelling by public transport and from nearby homes, and set out designated parking spaces along the street to meet business needs and avoid people parking on pavements.
It was a dull and wet couple of days which meant we couldn’t set things up in the same colourful way that we did for the Festival trial, but we did have lots of useful conversations with businesses, residents, people visiting the area and those just passing through.
We talked to around 40 people over the two days, and received over 80 responses to our online survey. There was a mix of views – the idea of widening the footpaths was popular with most people, closely followed by the creation of extra public space at the top of the bank, but there were concerns about the impact the one-way system might have on local businesses and residents, and how it might increase traffic cutting through Coquet Street and Stepney Road.
As a result we’re going to look at a second option, where we still try to improve pedestrian areas, make space for horses and cyclists and have designated car-parking along the street, but retain the two-way access for vehicles. We hope to be able to share this before Christmas and will ask people which option they prefer.
We’re also continuing to work with the Council on the designs that were trialled at the Ouseburn Festival this summer. We expect to have some final draft plans by the start of 2015, and we will be arranging some public events and emailing out information before the end of January. If we can agree the proposals they’ll move on to a technical design stage, and work could start in Summer 2015, to be complete by September 2015.