The Crown Estate and Westminster City Council have delivered interim plans for Regent Street, to help create a greener, safer and more accessible West End. Watch our video to see the new space take shape.
These plans have been designed to respond to the need for more pavement space on Regent Street, to support social distancing, and replace the temporary barriers in place since May 2020. Designed on a trial basis, these plans will be in place for an initial 18 month period, while we welcome feedback, and learn more about what works well.
Beyond this, we are keen to continue working closely with Westminster City Council, Transport for London and our customers and stakeholders, building on this interim solution to continue evolving this important destination.
What are the interim plans delivering?
- Wider pavements –approximately 5,000 square meters of additional space for pedestrians, to improve visitors’ experience, support social distancing and improve accessibility
- Reduced traffic – with road space reduced to a single vehicle lane in each direction.
- Improved provision for cyclists – including the introduction of cycle lanes and new cycle parking hubs and stands
- Enhanced bus stops – with accessible boarding and space for waiting
Sustainable tree planting and greenery have also been introduced helping to boost biodiversity, improve air quality, and further enhance Regent’s Street’s iconic John Nash design. New seating has been installed, creating places for people to pause and rest.
Answers to some of your frequently asked questions:
What do the new plans mean for cyclists?
We have worked hard to achieve a balance of needs on Regent Street, ensuring we create sufficient space for pedestrians, including to support safe social distancing, as well as improving options for other forms of sustainable transport, including cycling.
Our plans are introducing cycle lanes for the first time on Regent Street, as well as new cycle parking hubs and stands. They build on other recent initiatives within our Central London portfolio to support sustainable travel, such as the introduction of BIKE-DROP - a new pop-up concept, offering convenient, safe and secure bike parking.
Creating physical barriers to segregate cycle lanes is a challenge within the space available, but we are keen to continue working closely with customers, stakeholders, to invite feedback, and consider future plans – including for cyclists.
How have you considered accessibility?
We are committed to creating accessible places, and we have engaged with charities such as AccessAble on these plans, to ensure this is a central part of our ongoing plans for Regent Street.
In designing the new street, we considered a number of measures to help improve accessibility for visitors to Regent Street – including introducing tactile paving at crossing points for those with visual impairments and creating new seating areas to enable people to pause and rest. We’ve also made sure to maintain accessible public transport provisions, with new bus stops that include accessible boarding and space for waiting.
What about air quality?
We’re working closely with Westminster City Council, TfL, the GLA and other local stakeholders, to help drive improvements to our air quality across the West End.
Reducing congestion and vehicle movements is a vital part of that, and reducing traffic to a single lane in each direction on Regent Street is a step in the right direction.
This builds on our work to host a number of car-free days on Regent Street, including our long running Summer Streets initiative, and our work to reduce delivery traffic, through initiatives like our freight consolidation scheme.
However, we know that any decisions on road use needs to be considered in a holistic way, ensuring that they contribute to an overall reduction in vehicle movements, without pushing road users on to surrounding streets, or impacting access for people using public transport services like buses.
We are keen to work in collaboration with Westminster City Council, TfL, the local community and other key stakeholders, to explore the best solution for Regent Street in the longer term.
What about planting and biodiversity?
We want to create a greener, cleaner and more sustainable West End. To support this we have introduced tree planting and greening on Regent Street.
We have worked closely with experts to carefully consider the types of plants and trees we are introducing, to ensure we continue improving biodiversity and enhance the experience for our visitors. We’re also introducing bug-hotels, creating habitats for vital insect life, complementing our ongoing work as part of Wild West End.
Why did we choose these varieties of trees for Regent Street?
We chose a diverse mix of species, which includes London Plane trees. We will be reviewing how they will work in this environment over the next 12-18 months.
All trees have been sourced in the United Kingdom, and will offer varied biodiversity to support insects and birds, provide seasonal changes with colours and flowering and importantly contribute to improving air quality.
What scope is there for further changes to Regent Street in the future?
These plans are just one step in our ongoing investment in Regent Street, to continue evolving and improving Regent Street for everyone. We want to learn from these designs and feedback from the local community in order to continue improving Regent Street in the future.
How can you hear more about the plans and have your say?
We’re keen to invite thoughts and feedback, to ensure we’re delivering the best possible destination.
We’ll be sharing more information on how you can register for updates and share your thoughts about these plans alongside the longer term future of Regent Street in the coming weeks.
Share your views
To find out more about our plans, including further FAQs, and to register to receive updates, visit our dedicated consultation website.
The website will be updated with more details of the plans and ways for you to provide your comments and feedback in 2021.