Residents and visitors can now enjoy a new welcoming public space in Broad Street in the heart of Oxford thanks to transformation works led by Oxfordshire County Council.
The Broad Street project is open and provides a wider pedestrian area with seating and planting, creating an environment where people can meet with friends to socialise or take a break and enjoy the space between working, sightseeing or shopping.
These changes form part of a county council initative that will stay in place until spring 2024, with regular activities and events taking place and seasonal planting keeping it vibrant and attractive.
Over 150 people from a range of groups, organisations and businesses have helped to shape the Broad Street project with insights, advice and recommendations on designing, planning, building, engineering and installation.
The council is inviting feedback on the project until 24 April 2023 at 11.59pm, which will help inform if the project could be extended or repeated at a future point (subject to funding).
Councillor Andrew Gant, Cabinet Member for Highways Management, said: “So much work has gone into delivering this for everyone living in, working in and visiting the city.
“I’d like to thank the City Council, businesses, colleges, residents, events and interest groups who have helped us to shape this wonderful space. We are extremely proud to now unveil the results of this work for everyone to enjoy.
“The Broad Street project is part of our commitment to provide green public spaces in urban areas, where people can come together and enjoy a place to meet and relax, attend events, and celebrate our popular city centre.
“We are looking forward to you sharing your experiences of the project and hearing your feedback on it.”
To improve safety on Broad Street while maintaining essential access, there have been some changes to parking spaces on Broad Street.
Some disabled parking bays have moved to nearby Parks Road (outside Wadham College), and motorcycle and cycle parking has been relocated to St Giles. Additional cycle parking has been provided on Broad Street. The bus set-down point on Broad Street has moved to Parks Road.
These changes ensure accessibility is maintained for those who need it while providing a large green space for seating, socialising and events in the heart of the city.
The seating and planters have been made by award-winning Blackbird Leys social enterprise RAW workshop and family business WoodBlocX. Both companies were selected on the strength of their dedication to community support and climate responsibility.
You can share your views and experiences of the Broad Street project through an online survey. The survey will be open for at least six months.