Oxford’s Broad Street project to continue

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Oxfordshire County Council has approved proposals for Oxford’s Broad Street public realm project to continue.

The project provides a mix of seating and planting in the heart of the city centre to promote wellbeing and a greener cityscape while encouraging less reliance on motor vehicles for local trips. The area is surrounded by historic buildings and is next to some of Oxford’s most popular streets for shopping, dining, and entertainment. It opened in October 2022 as part of the county council’s commitments to deliver new access to green space in the county’s urban areas.

Councillor Andrew Gant, Cabinet Member for Transport Management said:

 “This is a new foundation from which we can really establish Oxford’s historic centre as an important landmark. Broad Street project’s public social space provides a rest spot for shoppers, meeting point for friends, lunch place for people working in the city centre and a focal point integrated into the city’s many walking tours. Making the scheme permanent will allow for examining more options to really make the space something very special for generations to come.”

The decision was made to make the current experimental traffic regulation order (ETRO) on Broad Street permanent under a formal traffic regulation order, including to:

  • Replace the current kerb ramps with permanent dropped kerbs and tactile paving to clearly identify the position of the dropped kerbs – subject to available budget (report page 21, paragraph 70).
  • Investigate medium and longer-term measures to further enhance Broad Street and surrounding streets – subject to funding availability. This includes seeking funding to add more permanent street furniture.

The project currently features street furniture made by local workshop RAW and family business Woodblocx and installed by Oxford Direct Services. Further plans to enhance the space would be opened to public consultation at a future date and are subject to funding.



For more information about this release contact the Oxfordshire County Council communications team on 01865 323870 or email press.office@oxfordshire.gov.uk


Notes to editors

  • Approval for an experimental traffic regulation order (ETRO) for the temporary public realm scheme of the street was given on Thursday 21 July 2022, as part of a delegated decision meeting for highways management. [Item 4, pages 1 - 13].
  • Public consultations on the project ran from 24 August to 16 September 2022 and from 25 October 2022 to 31 July 2023 – extended to allow for a wider seasonal experience of the project). More detail on the consultation findings is in the report to cabinet of 14 December 2023.
  • Medium and longer-term measures would include improvements to road safety as identified through monitoring and feedback during the ETRO phase, and public realm enhancements. Statutory conditions and budget limits restricted more permanent furniture from being put in place during the experimental stage.

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