More than 22,000 responses have been received as part of a second consultation around the pedestrianisation of Oxford Street in London.
The plans, subject to the recent consultation by Westminster City Council and Transport for London (TfL), proposed a new traffic-free area between Orchard Street and Oxford Circus delivered by December 2018 to coincide with the launch of Elizabeth Line services. Around a million people were directly contacted with emails, letters and leaflets. This followed an earlier initial consultation in Spring 2017, which saw 62% of the 12,000 responses supporting the principles behind the transformation of Oxford Street.
Of the 22,000 who responded to the online consultation directly, 64% supported all or some of the plans to transform the area. 33% of those who responded did not support the plans. TfL also received around 7,000 written responses as part of a Living Streets campaign supporting the scheme, and a further 632 written responses as part of a local campaign against the proposal.
TfL and Westminster City Council are now considering every one of the issues raised any further decision is taken on how to proceed. The issues raised include traffic and air quality on residential roads, provision of a safe cycle route through the wider area, management of the public space and ensuring that Oxford Street remains accessible for all.
Cllr Daniel Astaire, Cabinet Member for Planning and Public Realm, said: “We’re pleased that we have had such a significant response to this important consultation and we now need to take our time to look in detail at every issue raised before we take any final decision to make sure we get it right. We know that people are very passionate about this iconic part of London and that is why we are clear that it has to be the right scheme that works in the best interests of those who live, work and visit the area.”
Val Shawcross, Deputy Mayor for Transport, said: “I’m delighted that so many Londoners have got involved and given us their backing to transform Oxford Street and the surrounding area. Our plans will make Oxford Street one of the finest public spaces and shopping streets in the world, while investing in widespread improvements to make the area cleaner and safer.”
Alex Williams, Director of City Planning at TfL, said: “The introduction of the Elizabeth line later this year will significantly increase the number of people walking along Oxford Street and this creates a once in a lifetime opportunity to transform the area into an unrivalled place to live, visit and work.
“The results of this consultation show that there is a strong desire to improve the West End and make Oxford Street more pedestrian focused. All points raised in the consultation are being considered and we continue to work with Westminster City Council ahead of a final decision on the scheme later this year.”