Phase one of the redevelopment of Liverpool’s waterfront gateway – The Strand – has been completed.

Contractors for Liverpool City Council, who are finalising minor snagging issues, have now removed all barriers on the historic highway.

Untouched in its layout since the 1950s, when the city’s Overhead Railway was dismantled, the radical redesign of The Strand has seen the removal of several junctions and a lane reduction in both directions as part of a bid to improve traffic flow, pedestrian safety and air quality levels.

Phase one of The Strand runs from Leeds Street to James Street, past the city’s world famous Three Graces to the former White Star line building where The Titanic was designed. Phase two, which is set to begin in Spring 2022 and will see a further 70 trees planted, will run from James Street to Liver Street, passing Liverpool One, The Royal Albert Docks and ACC Liverpool in Kings Dock.

A new segregated two-way cycle lane, which is set to open at the start of November, has been installed with the redesign also creating 2.2 acres of new public space, complete with new seating and the planting of more than 80 trees.

This phase will see the continuation of the cycle lane, which will connect to the route running through the Baltic Triangle and onto the south of the city.

Work will also begin in 2022 to create new cycle lanes on Chapel/Tithebarn Street and Water Street, which will take cyclists from the waterfront to the Knowledge Quarter in the eastern district of the city centre.

The Strand redevelopment is a key element of the wider Liverpool City Centre Connectivity (LCCC) scheme which has already led to changes to Victoria Street, Dale Street, Brownlow Hill, City Bus Hub and the removal of the Churchill Way Flyover, as well as a new coach park.

The LCCC is receiving £40.1m from the Local Growth Fund with local match funding of £28m and is a major part of Liverpool City Council’s Better Roads programme. Local Growth Funding is awarded to the Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and invested through the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority through its Strategic Investment Fund.

Councillor Dan BarringtonCabinet member for Climate EmergencyTransport and Environment, said:

“We are delighted to all of the major highways elements required for phase one of The Strand redesign are now complete.

“The roadworks, coupled with the unforeseen delays, have tested us all and we are immensely grateful for your patience. It has been a frustrating time for motorists, bus passengers, cyclists and pedestrians. And for that we apologise. There remain some minor snags and work required on the gulleys and signage will be carried out over the next few days.

“Given the location and scale of the redesign, this has been a hugely complex scheme. We now hope that all road users will soon start to appreciate the benefits of the works. There are fewer junctions from Leeds Street to James Street, which has led to a much smoother traffic slow, as intended.

“New seating and trees have been installed to provide a more welcoming environment, with more than two acres of public space created to increase the overall experience of our historic waterfront.

“For cyclists, the new cycle lane will be fully functional once connecting routes to The Strand, and phase two, are complete. Next week a traffic order will open up access to Bath Street going to and from the north docks and works on Chapel/Tithebarn Street and Water Street are due to begin in the New Year connecting all routes.

“Temporary cycle lane features have been painted onto the footway in anticipation of phase two. This phase will run from James Street to Liver Street and is scheduled to begin in the spring.

“There are fewer junctions to design in phase two, but given this is a major highway in the city centre, some disruption will be inevitable. Once again, there will be a concerted effort to minimise the impact and we apologise in advance for that.”

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