Work to start on Frideswide Square this February

Starting overnight from 16 February engineers will begin the process of removing traffic islands and placing traffic signals into concrete filled barrels.

The full traffic management system, which will be in place throughout the first phase of work, will be implemented overnight on 27/ 28 February 2015.

Fencing around the area where the first phase of work will take place will be put up on 2 March 2015, marking the start of the main phase of work.

The attached map shows where the first phase of work will take place, and the routes that will be taken by drivers, pedestrians and cyclists.

Vital gateway into Oxford

Frideswide Square provides a vital link between the major road routes into Oxford. It is therefore of strategic importance in Oxfordshire’s road network, handling tens of thousands of journeys every day as well as being the gateway to the area for rail passengers.

When the work is finished traffic will follow a free flow arrangement, with all traffic signals being removed. The current traffic light controlled junctions will be replaced by three roundabouts and traffic will travel along one central boulevard carriageway.

Step forward for the city

County Councillor David Nimmo Smith, Cabinet member for transport, said: “The start of work marks another step forward in the development of the city of Oxford.

“The county council, with support from the city council, is going to completely transform Frideswide Square in terms of the layout for traffic but also by vastly improving the public space.

“We want Frideswide Square to be a place people come to for enjoyment and leisure, so the design also seeks to upgrade things like paving, lighting and seating. There will be attractive planting and much more space meaning that the area could host events like markets or entertainment in the future.

“Frideswide Square is one of the key bottlenecks preventing reliable journey times for people commuting into Oxford from outside the city. By removing traffic lights and using roundabouts traffic will be able to flow more freely than at the moment.

“There will be shared space, which works well in other parts of the city, for cyclists and pedestrians meaning less conflict with traffic on the road.”

Plan journeys in advance

“While we are working on the improvements there will undoubtedly be disruption for people who travel through the area and for those who live or work there.

“We have been in regular contact with people around the square and will continue to work with them to minimise disruption as work progresses.

“The advice to drivers, as with any major scheme of this kind, is to plan your journeys. Consider taking another route if you need to go into the city centre or think about a different mode of transport. Travelling at a different time could also help to avoid peak delays.”

More information

A web page has been set up for the scheme, which can be found at www.oxfordshire.gov.uk/frideswidesquare containing information on the work along with maps, FAQs and a form to sign up for regular bulletins. You can also find out about other Oxfordshire County Council major transport improvement schemes at www.oxfordshire.gov.uk/travelchoices