Bristol Post

Bridge traffic ban to become permanent

- Conor GOGARTY Chief reporter

THE closure of Bristol Bridge and some nearby routes to general traffic will be made permanent.

Bristol City Council’s experiment­al traffic order – announced in August last year as an 18-month trial – will become permanent on Saturday, July 17.

The order restricts general traffic on:

» Bristol Bridge

» Baldwin Street, between St Augustine’s Parade and Marsh Street » Baldwin Street to High Street » Union Street’s left turn onto Rupert Street

» Buses, solo motorcycle­s, taxis and cycles are given priority under the order.

In the weeks after the trial came into force, 3,574 people signed a petition calling for the scheme to be reversed, citing the impact on local businesses. This triggered a counterpet­ition signed by 1,425 supporters of a “car-free healthy city centre”.

Hamid Parast, who owned Centre Cafe Lounge on Baldwin Street, claimed the scheme caused difficulti­es for deliveries, citing this as one of the reasons for the cafe’s closure in February.

But there has also been praise from Baldwin Street businesses. Brewdog bar, Oowee takeaway and Five Grains cafe spoke last week about how the trial had created a more enjoyable environmen­t for customers and made it easier for cyclists to deliver food from the street’s businesses.

In a letter to a resident, the council’s interim director for economy of place, Peter Anderson, wrote that he had “considered a report on the objections and comments”.

He added: “After careful considerat­ion, I decided that the provisions in the ETRO [the order] should be made permanent in like terms.

“In making this decision I considered that the scheme would achieve elements of the wider transport policy aspiration­s of the city council’s overall transport strategy, as set out in the Joint Local Transport Plan 2020 to 2036.”

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Bristol Bridge

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