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Southampton to be 'transformed' with multi-million pound plans

Southampton News

Multi-million pound plans to transform Southampton city centre have been revealed.

Civic chiefs have said the city could undergo a major makeover as part of an £18.5m scheme to improve travel links.

The proposals from Southampton City Council would see multiple key roads into the area closed while work was completed between 2021 and 2022.

The transformation has been suggested as a way to improve the way people move in and around the city.

It comes after the council made a bid to improve the city's roads by 2040 with its Connected Southampton Transport Strategy.

An extensive list of proposals has been unveiled by council bosses and includes ideas to make space for new crossings, wider pavements, new car parks and cycle lanes across the city, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS).

Proposals also include a new bus hub at Albion Place car park on Portland Terrace and improvements to Southampton Central Station with new crossings, more bus stops and taxi pick up and drop off facilities, as well as e-scooters and cycle parking.

'Bold re-imagining'

Councillor Steve Leggett, cabinet member for green city and place, said: "As our population and economy continue to grow, it's imperative to think differently about transport in Southampton.

"These plans outline a bold re-imagining of our city centre, reclaiming space for people while ensuring that our road network is well-equipped to boost productivity and support future growth.

An initial survey on the changes will run until March 19 and funding for the scheme would come from the government's Transforming Cities Fund.

If approved, work could then start in phases from the Autumn 2021 and run until the final proposed phase of work to Above Bar Street in Autumn 2022.

Cllr Steven Galton, shadow cabinet member for transport, raised concerns over the proposals and the impact they would have on the city.

He said: "Hard hit and struggling businesses need the council's full support right now, not these hare-brained, ideologically driven plans. Residents trying to get to work, or to do the weekly shop don't want to be stuck in even more traffic jams."