Plans to transform Oxford Street [PDF] have progressed slightly, after 62% support from a public consultation.
11,953 responses were received during the initial eight-week consultation conducted by Westminster City Council, The Mayor of London and Transport For London between April and June 2017.
TFL, the mayor, and Westminster City Council have ambitious plans for the UK's most famous high street. They want to make the area one of the best outdoor shopping districts in the world. Part of this strategy would be to cut buses on Oxford Street by 40%, reducing overall congestion and improving air quality.
Cllr Robert Davis MBE DL Deputy Leader of Westminster City Council said: "This is the next step in our efforts to transform the country's most famous and economically important shopping district, which is also home to a vibrant residential community."
Yet despite Davis' enthusiasm, only 43% of respondents to the consultation indicated they support the transformation of Oxford Street AND are comfortable with the necessary changes to make this happen. A further 19% said they support the transformation, but have concerns over the necessary changes.
30% of respondents do not support the plans, citing among their concerns, how the transformation of Oxford Street would affect traffic flows in the surrounding areas.
Despite the somewhat tepid support, Alex Williams, Director of City Planning at Transport for London, argued that the "strong" support from the consultation has shown that there is a desire to make Oxford Street and the wider area an even better place to live. He said: "Along with reducing the number of buses along Oxford Street by 40%, the introduction of the Elizabeth line provides a once in a generation opportunity to tackle the challenges of poor air quality and congestion to help ensure that it retains its iconic status for years to come."
No specific details about the plans have been released, including how much the transformation is going to cost.
A second consultation is due to take place in November 2017 however, with a full plan for the areas transformation expected to be in place by 2021.
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