Stevenson Square is now officially ‘car-free’ as of Friday 3rd July. However, it should be noted that this still remains a temporary measure.
Since lockdown began, the Council have been creating a series of ‘traffic-free zones’ throughout the city – most noticeably at one end of Deangate and on Thomas street in the Northern Quarter. Stevenson Square is the latest addition to this list, as it becomes closed off to traffic in preparation for the opening of bars and restaurants on Saturday 4th July.
In order to create the necessary space in which to allow people to sufficiently socially distance, the council have been creating these areas and they’ve proved to be rather popular indeed.
In addition, Ducie Street will also be closed to traffic between London Road and Dale Street from Friday, while Withy Grove is to be made a one-way route, to provide more space for pedestrians.
Stevenson Square and the section of Ducie Street will both become pedestrian and cycle zones seven days per week until further notice, with access for businesses provided between 6am and 10am daily.
Buses that previously used the stops in Stevenson Square will be diverted along Lever Street to Great Ancoats Street and into Oldham Street, with alternative layover facilities provided on Lever Street. Vehicle access to Dale Street will be provided via Great Ancoats Street.
The Ducie Street part-closure is designed to alleviate the build-up of pedestrians waiting at traffic lights and to prevent queueing vehicles from blocking trams and buses on Aytoun Street.
The news of Stevenson Square’s fate will likely be music to the ears of the many groups out there who have been pushing for it’s pedestrianisation for years. As with the other ‘zones’ the council are stressing that these are currently temporary measures – so it could all go back to how it was in a few months.