Radical plans to redesign roads and pavements outside Newcastle’s Central Station have been revealed.
Planners will today kick off a public consultation on how to improve the area outside the station to coincide with ambitious new plans for the train station itself.
A two-way cycle track will be created at the west end of Neville Street, south of St Mary’s Cathedral and the flow of traffic at the front of the station will also be altered to ease congestion in the area.
Taxis will no longer be able to enter the portico. Instead they will continue to rank from Orchard Street with a pick up area just to the east of the portico. Pedestrian crossings will also be provided on Neville Street and lower Grainger Street.
Sean Bullick, chief executive of business group NE1 said: “We are excited to be unveiling the dramatic plans for such a crucial part of the city.
“These plans are the results of over three years of hard work and will not only redevelop this immediate area but also facilitate the regeneration of the city centre.
“While this is a fantastic project, it is only the first stage of a series of transformational developments.”
Coun Michael Johnson, deputy cabinet member for skills, business and enterprise at Newcastle Council, said: “The Central Gateway redevelopment is key to our ambition of transforming Newcastle into a truly international transport hub.
“Improving connectivity between core cities and other regions of the UK and Europe will help to drive growth and increase the competitiveness of the regional economy, while the public realm works will greatly increase accessibility and provide an enhanced link to the city centre.”
Last week, East Coast announced it was spending more than £8m turning the taxi rank outside into a glazed portico. East Coast stations director Tim Hedley-Jones said: “Newcastle Central Station is a key part of the history and future of both the city and the wider North East region.
“The improvements will accentuate the important heritage of the Grade One listed building, one of only six such stations in the UK, and act as a stunning new gateway to the city for visitors.
“We believe the project will play a key role in the regeneration of the city centre and help to demonstrate that Newcastle and the North East are very much open for business.”
:: The plans will be on view at the Thistle Hotel today from 3-8pm.