New bollards have been put in place to stop vehicles driving through a pedestrianised area of Oldham town centre.
The bollards have been installed at the entrances to Albion Street and Henshaw Street to stop unauthorised drivers from using the High Street.
Although the area is a car-free zone, some drivers have been using High Street, and stopping the area from being a safe place for those on foot or bike.
From now on unauthorised vehicles won’t be able to get access to the town centre unless it’s an essential trip or emergency.
Leader of Oldham Council, Cllr Arooj Shah, said: “As a Council, we are committed to creating a town centre which is safe and accessible to everyone.
“Oldhamers have told us that they’re concerned about pedestrian safety on the high street so we’re installing these bollards to limit access.
“Not only will this give shoppers peace of mind when they visit, it will also make walking and cycling around the town centre even safer with fewer cars on the road.
“The new bollards also help us to build a better town where we encourage more people to cycle, walk, and use public transport.”
The bollards will be active seven days a week and will only be lowered for authorised vehicles, such as those making deliveries or responding to emergencies.
This measure is another step in Oldham Council’s Accessible Oldham scheme, a series of improvements to make it easier, safer and more enjoyable to travel around Oldham.
As part of the scheme, the council recently announced the opening of Hilton Square, a new public space with planting, seating and better paving along Albion Street.
Work is also well underway on the other key town centre regeneration projects, including the new home for Tommyfield Market ; new offices for the public and private sector within Spindles, and restoration of the Old Library.
Plans have also now been submitted for Oldham’s new £24m theatre, set to be the new home for Oldham Coliseum. Plans include a main auditorium seating more than 300 people, a 120-seat studio theatre, an education suite, and all-day café-bar areas, which can also be used as additional performance spaces.
To find out more about the ongoing transformation of Oldham, visit the website here: www.oldham.gov.uk/regen