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Plan to permanently pedestrianise heart of Bristol city centre to be put to council for approval

Bristol City Council is to request funding for the project, with a senior transport planner saying it will encourage cycling and walking, reduce air pollution and make more street space available for commercial and cultural events

Bristol City Council is set to request funding for a £2 million plan to fully pedestrianise parts of the city centre.

Changes to King Street and the Old City have been mooted, to make the temporary traffic ban introduced during the summer of 2020 to help hospitality outlets during the first easing of coronavirus restrictions, and would see increased accessibility for those cycling or on foot.

The BBC reports that transport planners will ask council chiefs to make the Old City's historic streets and King Street permanently pedestrianised at next week's cabinet meeting on Tuesday 7 June.

Transport planner Sam Green has already stated in a cabinet report that the aim is to "make the Old City and King Street area pedestrian-friendly by restricting vehicle movements", which will, he says, encourage walking and cycling, reduce air pollution and open up the area for more on-street commercial and cultural use.

"The project will improve space for people, routes for walking and segregation for cyclists away from vehicles," he said.

"Other benefits include improving air quality, combating climate change, improving health and wellbeing, addressing inequalities and tackling congestion."

The entire scheme is estimated to cost in the region of £2.17 million, with a funding bid to be submitted to the West of England Combined Authority expected in October if the cabinet approves the plan.

Other improvement works mentioned in the proposal include: installation of dropped kerbs in the Old City, upgraded puffin crossings on Baldwin Street to give pedestrians priority, and installation of new benches.

Estimated start dates for the project, and information on how long it may take, have not yet been announced but it would see the temporary changes of 2020 made permanent.

Dan joined in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.

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