Stevenson Square Mcc
Calls for full-time pedestrianisation grew in 2020. Credit: Manchester City Council

Stevenson Square pedestrianisation goes to public

Neil Tague

A third consultation on Manchester City Council’s ambition to make the square one of the city’s most attractive destinations has been launched.

Two rounds of consultation have already been held over the square’s future, with the proposals coming on the back of well-received temporary changes made in 2020. MCC said this will be the last round.

Working around the pandemic last summer led to streets being closed to traffic and pedestrian spaces widened to enable social distancing, as well as housing outdoor tables for bars and restaurants.

MCC said that feedback so far indicated that the public want the full pedestrianisation of Stevenson Square, spaces to sit and relax, a safe traffic-free space to move through, and elements reflecting the character of the Northern Quarter.

In a shift from the previous proposal, the plan for a one-way bus route through the square has been removed, so there will be no motor traffic.

Important elements now suggested include:

  • The pedestrianisation of the square, with new seating and bike racks installed, trees planted and sustainable drainage systems (SUDS) installed.
  • A two-way cycle lane running through the square at the same level as the pavement, with tactile crossings and new signage.
  • Pedestrian and cycle crossings at Hilton Street’s junctions with Oldham Street and Newton Street. Footpaths in those areas to be widened.
  • Pay and display bays in Hilton Street to be removed.
  • Some loading bays in and around to be relocated to enable changes.
  • Additional planting of trees and SUDS to be added to the south-east side of Lever Street as part of the City of Tress project (subject to future surveys).

Full details on changes proposed are available in the online consultation. There will be two interactive online events as part of the process, on 6 December and 16 December. The process is open until 21 December.

Cllr Tracey Rawlins, MCC’s executive member for environment, said: “The experience of the past year, when more space was given over for pedestrians and cyclists, was incredibly positive and signalled a shift in how people want to interact and engage with the city of Manchester.

“I look forward to hearing people’s feedback on this final round of consultation.”

Your Comments

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Will there be through traffic via Little Lever st cutting through Stevenson Square? can’t really tell from the proposal.

By Meeseeks

This is genius, we should close more roads to traffic, make the ring road even more of a carpark than it is already. We should up carbon emissions by at least 200% the way we are heading. These people who come up with these idea’s need to get real, people drive, always will. Instead of making it more difficult, make it easier, get the traffic moving so idling cars become a thing of the past. THIS IS THE ONLY SOLUTION AND THE ONLY WAY OF HITTING NET 0 BY 2038 i can promise you that…

By Common Sense

Wasn’t expecting that. Looking forward to the final design now.

By Anonymous

Really happy this is finally getting done

By Jo

This is good news.

By Pete

@common sense the city centre is a realm for pedestrians not cars. Go and use a park and ride

By Disgruntled Goat

The city Centre will be so peaceful after all the roads are closed. Because nobody will visit or work in Manchester.

By Dan

LOL we’re talking about closing ONE SQUARE to traffic. Motorists are so used to decades and decades of preferential treatment that the moment you start taking even the tiniest things away from them they throw a temper tantrum.

By Anonymous

cars are so last century – and people who drive cars look excruciatingly uncool. Do the planet (and yourself) a favour and get a bike, walk, or take public transport. Instead of tootling around in your £3,000-a-year Planet-Destroying Misery Cage (PDMC for short)

By gen z

Oh Gen Z you are going to be sooo disappointed when all of those autonomous electric vehicles rock up all over the place in the coming years. This weeks weather will give you a glimpse of just why there will always be ‘personal transport solutions’ other than bikes. It’s because we want them!

By Genreal

Not one comment in support of that awful designated cycle lane effectively cutting the square in two. Why is it needed? The road surfaces largely remain in situ. Seriously? This space has clearly not been designed by professionals. Please get them involved or a great opportunity will be missed.

By Not Important Enough

Car journeys will be down by a quarter next summer when greater Manchester start charging motorists a arm and a leg to go around GM and a lot more people will start using public transport and walking a lot more to get into work, so making Stevenson square a pedestrian area should be good.

By Darren Born Bred