Improvements to Western Road
Our improvements to Western Road are designed to make the street a more attractive place to shop and spend time in, as well as make it easier for people travelling through. You can read more about the improvements below.
When construction is happening
Work began in November 2022. We expect work to take around 18 months and be finished in May 2024. The work will be completed in sections to minimise disruption. This means work will only take place in certain parts of the street at a time. Find out more about when we will be working on each section.
We’re maintaining access to businesses during opening hours. We’ll also make sure a pedestrian route is provided alongside road works.
The busy nature of Western Road means that we’ve needed to divert some traffic. This will also allow the works to be completed quicker than they otherwise would be. Find out more about the reasons for the diversion.
We plan to keep the road open westbound (towards Hove) so buses will operate as usual and other traffic can still access the area from side roads. We expect to reopen the road in both directions by the end of the year.
When we're working at side road junctions, some will need to be closed for a few weeks each. The length of closure will vary for each street. We'll be writing to those affected closer to the time and providing details of alternative arrangements.
All bus services will continue to run but will follow a different route between Montpelier Road and Churchill Square. After construction, buses will return to Western Road.
The eastbound Waitrose bus stop will be reopened when the work allows. In the meantime, please use Norfolk Square.
Both Clarence Square bus stops will be permanently closed. This is because the bus stops along Western Road are very closely spaced and there are alternatives nearby.
The Churchill Square stops will remain open as usual for most of the construction period.
For more information on buses, you can:
- view bus service updates on the Brighton & Hove Buses website
- view the timetable for the 700 service on the Stagecoach website
What we're doing
The council’s Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee approved the changes in July 2021. The plans have since been developed in more detail and you can download the latest plan drawings.
The changes include:
- a resurfaced road
- resurfaced and tidier pavements
- a simpler road layout with a central area to help with crossing for pedestrians
- other crossings
- more cycle parking, seating, and tree planting
- removing Clarence Square bus stops for additional pavement space
- improved pedestrian crossings
- new street lighting
The changes also include redesigning the Dyke Road junction with Western Road. This will remove the traffic lights and make Dyke Road a priority (‘give way’) junction but with traffic light crossings being retained on Western Road for pedestrians.
This change will reduce waiting time for pedestrians at the Clock Tower with access to Queen Square instead being provided via Dyke Road.
As part of the project, we'll be planting new trees. The designs don't require the removal of trees.
However, the council’s tree specialists have advised 2 mature trees west of Hampton Place, unfortunately, need to be taken down. This is because they are in poor health and at risk of becoming unsafe.
We'll take the opportunity as part of the project to plant replacements rather than leave stumps.
How we've funded the changes
Most funding came from the Department of Transport after we successfully applied for their:
- Active Travel Fund
- Highway Maintenance Challenge Fund
- Bus Service Improvement Plan
Our Carbon Neutral Fund will also fund parts of the project like cycling infrastructure and tree planting.
We held a public consultation about the changes to Western Road in the spring of 2021. We also consulted on the proposals for other active travel schemes across the city. Find out more about the consultation.
To make changes to the Dyke Road junction we also had to make changes to the Traffic Regulation Orders (TRO). The changes were advertised and agreed on in October 2021.
We advertised a further TRO in December 2022 for minor amendments to loading areas. It also proposed allowing 2-way cycling on surrounding 1-way streets. Following feedback from residents, we're not planning to introduce 2-way cycling on most streets at this stage. However, Castle Street, Marlborough Street and Spring Street will be opened to cyclists at their junctions with Western Road.
Find more about the TRO consultation on our TRO page.
The reference numbers are:
We put in place temporary TROs associated with the road works and diversions under the council’s powers provided for in section 14(1) of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984. These don't need consultation in the same way that permanent TROs do. This is because restrictions are only introduced where they are necessary to allow road works and to manage the impact of the road works. The legislation allows for the council to make these decisions without consultation.
If you have any questions about the project, send an email to email@example.com.