Gardner Street in Brighton could soon be closed to traffic

Plans to close a shopping street to all traffic except cyclists have received official support, despite objections from disability groups.

Councilors are now to be asked to decide whether to continue the closure of Gardner Street in Brighton from 11am to 7pm seven days a week.

According to one report, 115 comments supporting the plan to only allow pedestrians and cyclists to use the road were sent to Brighton and Hove City Council along with 75 objections.

The report to the Council’s Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee included a summary of the comments and where they came from.

People who live on Gardner Street and support the plans said the street would be better if it was pedestrianized for residents and businesses.

But holdouts, who live on Gardner Street, said the loss of disabled bays would limit access to shops and the Komedia theater and cinema.

The Argus: The road could be closed to traffic for a long timeThe road could be closed to traffic for an extended period of time

It is also understood that the proposed removal of blue badge bays will have a direct impact on a disabled resident of Gardner Street with limited mobility.

During the Covid-19 lockdown the road was closed to traffic except for cyclists and those requiring disabled access. Cafés and restaurants expanded into the street – as is currently the case on weekends.

Last year, City Council Advisor Mott McDonald recommended reopening the street to people with disabilities because of problems with access.

Two groups – Brighton Access for Disabled Groups Everywhere (BADGE) and Possability People – met Mott McDonald.

They raised concerns about safe disabled access – and the “sprawl” of cafe furniture and clothes rails in disabled parking spaces, which they want to keep free for those who need them.

The two groups were also concerned about a plan to move disabled parking from Gardner Street to neighboring Regent Street.

Seven more disabled bays are planned for Regent Street, in part to make up for the bays lost on Gardner Street. BADGE is listed under the objections to the current proposals.

The Argus: The plans are to be presented to the city councilsThe plans will be presented to City Council

The committee is asked to support the changes by approving two Traffic Regulations Orders (TROs) at a meeting next week.

If councilors refuse, officials have advised them to authorize additional disabled parking on Regent Street anyway – to improve access to North Laine for blue badge holders.

The report said: “The removal of double yellow lines and the creation of these disabled parking spaces makes it a criminal offense for delivery drivers to load and unload in these dedicated spaces.

“Local deliveries currently using the double yellow lines for deliveries will prevent blue badge holders from parking on these double yellow lines.

“The proposed temporary disabled parking spaces on Regent Street will also generate usage revenue for all blue badge holders visiting the area.”

The Council’s Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee will meet at Brighton Town Hall at 4pm on Tuesday.

The meeting will be webcast on the Council’s website. Gardner Street in Brighton could soon be closed to traffic

Fry Electronics Team

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