A major study has been launched into how people could travel in and around Shrewsbury in the future.
The ‘movement and public realm strategy’ is being led by the Shrewsbury Big Town Plan Partnership, and will involve detailed research and discussions with an extensive range of public and private sector partners, and community groups, ahead of wider public consultation later this year.
Thousands of comments were received following the publication of the Big Town Plan Masterplan Vision in January 2021 – with much of the focus surrounding issues on traffic, public transport, walking and cycling around the town.
This study, being undertaken by expert transport planners and designers, PJA, will consider that feedback in detail, as well as holding extensive engagement work and research before making recommendations.
Councillor Ed Potter, Shropshire Council’s deputy Leader and representative on the Shrewsbury Big Town Plan Partnership, said:
“Getting movement of people right is absolutely vital to Shrewsbury’s future, and follows on from the Masterplan Vision which generated so much useful discussion and debate last year.
“The movement and public realm strategy will relate to lots of important work already in progress, such as the Local Transport Plan, the High Street weekend low traffic trial, planned transformation of the town’s Park and Ride, and of course the Riverside development.
“As this work progresses, we’ll be looking to get people involved and seek their views and what’s important to them in lots of different ways.
“This will be an holistic and integrated plan for the whole town – which is why the Shrewsbury Big Town Plan Partnership leading this work is important – all partners working together for the greater good of the town.”
Councillor Alan Mosley, leader of Shrewsbury Town Council and representative on the Big Town Plan Partnership, said:
“Shrewsbury is a wonderful town, defined by its narrow streets and historic layout, and no-one is seeking to change that, but I think most people acknowledge that clogging up the heart of the town centre with cars needs to become a thing of the past.
“It needs to be easier for people to travel into Shrewsbury in a variety of ways – whether they are walking, cycling, using public transport or even using the river. We also want promote these alternative modes of transport as part of the partners’ climate change initiatives.
“This report will be a vital part of the Big Town Plan, considering the many interconnected elements which have long been debated.”
James Handley, member of the Shrewsbury BID board and part of the Big Town Plan Partnership, said:
“From a business perspective this is about creating the very best access and public realm for the town centre and its businesses to flourish.
“As well as improving access into the town centre by foot and bike for people who live in or near to Shrewsbury, we want to ensure that accessible and high-quality bus, rail and car parking facilities are available for people and visitors coming from further afield, and for people who have specific access requirements.
“PJA are highly respected and are already familiar with Shrewsbury having worked on projects here in the past, so we are looking forward with real positivity to working with them on this project.”
For more information about PJA, visit www.pja.co.uk