Council plan city centre transport shake-up

06 October 2021

A massive overhaul of transport in Birmingham city centre is planned to meet the challenges of the next decade.

The Birmingham Transport Plan 2031, based on a 2020 consultation, is scheduled to be discussed at Birmingham City Council’s Cabinet meeting next Tuesday. It includes limited access for private cars with no through trips allowed.

And Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce (GBCC) urged the Council to “constructively engage” with businesses that have been “rocked to the core” by the pandemic and are only just embarking on the long road to recovery.

The plan is based around four key principles:              

  • Reallocating road space – to support the delivery of public transport and active travel networks
  • Transforming the city centre – via the creation of a network of pedestrianised streets and public spaces - integrated with public services and cycling infrastructure. Access to the city centre for private cars will be limited, with no through trips allowed. This includes looking at different options for the central section of the A38 Queensway, including re-routing traffic to an upgraded A4540 Ring Road.
  • Prioritising active travel in local neighbourhoods - Walking, cycling and active travel will become the main priority for people making short journeys in their local neighbourhoods. A limit of 20mph will be standard on all local roads
  • Managing Demand Thorough Parking Measures - Parking will be used as a means to manage demand for travel by car through availability, pricing and restrictions. Where development potential exists, land currently occupied by car parking will be put to more productive use.

The GBCC played an active role in consulting its members on the plans and submitted formal feedback to the Council in April 2020.

Henrietta Brealey (pictured), chief executive of the GBCC, said: “The changes proposed in the Council’s Transport Plan are likely to lead to a huge overhaul of the way we move goods and people around the city.

“It’s clear that the importance of the sustainability agenda has gained even greater traction during the pandemic and our members recognise that action needs to be taken to reduce dangerously high levels of pollution.

“Let’s not forget that many businesses have been rocked to their core by the pandemic and are only just embarking on the long road to recovery and will be concerned about any additional costs they could potentially face.

“We would urge the Council to take a pragmatic approach and constructively engage with firms in order to fully appreciate the impact these changes are likely on the wider business community.

"As a Chamber, we will endeavour to work proactively with Birmingham City Council to ensure the views of business are recognised and reflected throughout the plan.”

Click here to review the GBCC’s original consultation response to the Draft Birmingham Transport Plan

Click here to review the October 2021 Birmingham Transport Plan


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