Plans to permanently pedestrianise parts of Sidmouth town centre have been put forward in a bid to cut congestion and make the area ‘more attractive’.
Temporary measures were put in place in Old Fore Street, New Street, Market Place and Church Street last year as part of Covid-19 safety measures.
Now proposals have been submitted to ban traffic from the areas for good.
The mooted Sidmouth traffic order would see:
- The current Old Fore Street pedestrian zone becoming a prohibition of motor vehicles zone, in order to allow cyclists to use the road;
- Restrictions in New Street, Market Place and Church Street amended to prohibit motor vehicles at all times of the day;
- Limited waiting bays in Church Street removed;
- A three-hour maximum stay limit put on disabled parking bays in New Street;
- Limited waiting bays in Market Place removed;
- Limited waiting bays in Fore Street, near the junction with The Esplanade, which had been converted into a taxi rank, brought back into use.
Vehicle access for emergency services, loading and unloading of goods, and access to properties would be retained under the scheme.
As would access the taxi rank and disabled parking bays.
A public consultation on the plans is running until July 2.
Devon County Council says the scheme would improve road safety by reducing the volume of traffic in streets which are narrow.
The proposals add: “The streets generate significant pedestrian flows.
“It will improve the character and amenity of the local area and make the town centre more attractive for pedestrians, particularly the older and younger road users.
“It will reduce traffic congestion and potentially improve air quality and the character of the environment.”
It is expected that the scheme will go before the East Devon Highways and Traffic Orders Committee for approval.
Comment on the proposals here.