A Liberal Democrat amendment to fully pedestrianise the area was defeated by Labour, SNP, Conservative and Independent councillors. Instead they favoured “part-pedestrianisation”, with buses sharing the space with pedestrians.
Liberal Democrats went to lengths to point out that there is no such thing as “part-pedestrianisation”, it’s either pedestrianised or it’s not!
Kingswells, Sheddocksley, Summerhill councillor Steve Delaney said he would prefer to see the buses off Broad Street to make best use of the open space.
He also raised safety concerns about the use of shared surfaces, referring to the time when buses were permitted in the area of George Street in front of what’s now John Lewis. He spoke of pedestrians being lured into a false sense of security, only for a bus to come belting round the corner.
With regard to the public consultation exercise, Steve said, “I was concerned to see the consultation merely asked people’s views on the pros and cons of the three options. It did not even ask people to express a preferences. I would have liked to have known what the public thought before taking this decision, but sadly that was a missed opportunity. If nothing else I felt it was disrespectful to those who attended the events”.