Oxford Street to be car-free by 2020 in bid to tackle air pollution

I thought it was already only buses and taxis?

15 thoughts on “Eh?”

  1. Whatever they do, it will turn out like Glasgow’s Sauchiehall St. Empty of shops and people, with Charity ones only. A vibrant city cleared of purpose.

  2. The are several towns I can think of which are fully pedestrianised in the shopping area, Liverpool, Newcastle,most of Manchester. Nobody would even consider reintroducing traffic to those streets. It seems like a big step when you take it but when you look back you’ll think it would be madness for it to be any other way.

  3. And that will be because of outfits like Amazon, rather than traffic control measures. I used to make regular shopping trips down to London when that was the only way to get to large or specialist stores, but somewhere a bit over ten years ago, it was no longer necessary, so I stopped doing it. I can’t be the only one.

  4. Alan, what’s the practical difference between this vision of Oxford St and a large shopping centre like Trafford or blue water, where your parking space or bus stop may be hundreds of metres from the shop you want to visit? Oxford St will still have its tube stops and buses will be in adjacent streets.

  5. The Sage,

    It’s not just Amazon for me, but all sorts of other things: online coffee sellers, online shirt sellers etc. And M&S now do a service where you can get things sent to a local store and try them on rather than having to go to a big store. Oh, and being able to stream arthouse movies around the time of release has made a huge difference to how many trips out that I do.

    It’s made provincial living rather decent.

  6. I have driven in Oxford street in the recent past.

    The congestion problem , there as elsewhere, is mainly from London’s absurd buses.

  7. As the article says, cars are already banned 7am-7pm.

    I’ve driven down it not so long ago, but it’s heavily discouraged. The adjoining one-way streets and no-turn signs are arranged in such a way that cars can only turn onto Oxford Street at a handful of points (Poland Street is the one I’m thinking of).

    The new mayor suffers from adult-onset asthma, so we can expect to hear a lot more from him about air pollution.

  8. If May wanted to reform herself, announcing the immediate abolition of the office of London Mayor would be an excellent start.

  9. @Alan Douglas:

    Why won’t it turn out like Glasgow’s Buchanan Street, a thriving and bustling pedestrianised street?

  10. Are they going to ban all the North-South routes crossing it as well? Also, there are no other full length East-West routes between Euston Road and Embankment

    You’d have to completely redesign the whole bus system from scratch.

  11. Bloke in North Dorset

    There’s no way they will ban buses from Oxford Street. I used to walk the length of it regularly* as it was a route between my hotel and the office I was working at and its too far for the average person to contemplate. perhaps they should walk it, but they won’t.

    The only way to deal with the pollution is electric buses and taxis.

    *but only 1st thing in the morning before it got busy

  12. The only way to deal with the pollution is electric buses and taxis.

    And all that does is push the pollution to somewhere else.

  13. Bloke in Costa Rica

    Pollution? Air quality in London is better than it’s been since the sixteenth century.

    If you really wanted to ease congestion in Oxford Street you’d issue people like me, who walk like they mean to get somewhere, with an electric shock baton to zap the bovine, gawping tourist twats that make going anywhere on foot in central London such a hair-tearingly awful experience.

  14. But where will the buses go? At the moment there is no need to walk down Oxford Street unless you are a tourist who knows no better. M&S has an entrance in Gt Marlborough Str, John Lewis an entrance at Cavendish Sq. There is no other reason to visit Oxford Str.

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