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Transforming Friargate South Project

This public realm scheme to Friargate South is being delivered with funding successfully secured through the 'Active Preston' Levelling Up Fund Programme.

A scheme design has also been developed for Orchard Street. However, funds are not in place for implementing the proposals for Orchard Street. If funds are secured, this element of the scheme will also be brought forward.

The design proposals for both Friargate South and Orchard Street are therefore being consulted upon.

The proposed Friargate South and Orchard Street schemes present an exciting opportunity to further improve the street scene across the city centre, improving the public realm and a sustainable transport network, to encourage regeneration.

The improvements are designed to encourage cycle and pedestrian movement through Friargate South, Cheapside and Orchard Street and connect with the public realm improvements that have already taken place on Fishergate, Friargate North and the Market Hall, as well as planned improvements under the Illuminate and Integrate Scheme.

The scheme supports the Council's Community Wealth Building commitment to create a resilient and inclusive economy, improving the local environment, better air quality and encouraging active travel.

The Friargate North works have been undertaken by Lancashire County Council.

The Friargate South improvements are being delivered by Preston City Council working in partnership with Eric Wright Civil Engineering.

These improvements create an important North-South Link of Active Travel provision in the central core of the city.

Download a print friendly copy of the Friargate South Project consultation document (PDF) [5MB] .

Aerial map of proposed Friargate South and Orchard Street Schemes

Aerial map of proposed Friargate South and Orchard Street Schemes

The missing piece of the jigsaw

Whilst the Harris Quarter is well connected to the rest of the city centre via the existing network of streets, many of these routes are dated having been designed around vehicular movement, limiting the potential for cycle and pedestrian use.

Dated, tired and a patchwork of materials, as well as a cluttered public realm, prevents from unifying the fine architecture within the area.

A number of improvement schemes are ongoing in the area and the Friargate South and Orchard Street schemes are the missing pieces of the jigsaw.

The proposal focuses on improving and re-balancing the pedestrian and cycle provisions on Friargate South, Cheapside and Orchard Street to better connect to the wider network.

Aerial illustration of proposed Friargate South and Orchard Street Schemes and wider area

Aerial illustration of proposed Friargate South and Orchard Street Schemes and wider area

The proposal

The proposals will be integrated into the Transforming Ringway and Friargate North improvements, which have been designed to support cyclists and pedestrians between the University and the Harris Quarter.

Friargate South aims to provide a pedestrian priority public realm that matches work already carried out on Fishergate and Friargate North using Complementary materials.

Improvements to the area include high quality paving, which differ in treatment and type. They will provide continuity with the Friargate North paving improvements.

On Friargate South, improvements include:

  • A shared pedestrian/cyclist/service vehicle zone paved with a warm, buff tone of natural granite finish and concrete Kellen paving, with a one way contra-flow cycle lane paved in a darker tone for visual demarcation
  • A two-tone corduroy strip of paving to the edge of the shared-use central carriageway zone
  • A feature paved area at the section where Friargate South connects with Orchard Street
  • 3 granite paved courtesy crossings

On Cheapside, improvements include:

  • A new contra flow cycle lane alongside the Flag Market with asphalt /chippings surface
  • Resurfacing of pavement area with a natural granite finish
  • Resurfacing of carriageway with new asphalt surface
  • 2 additional granite paved courtesy crossings

On Orchard Street,improvements include:

  • A shared pedestrian/cyclist /service vehicle zone paved with a natural granite finish and Kellen paving
  • A two tone corduroy strip of paving to the edge of the central zone
  • Seating

The new street furniture to include:

  • Cycle stands
  • Litter bins/bollards
  • Benches and  seating blocks
  • Street trees set within rain gardens/planted areas

The proposed line of street trees will add to the ecological value of this area as well as improve the aesthetics of the street scene.

Map of Friargate South proposed line of trees

Map of Friargate South proposed line of trees

Aims of the proposal

  • Add to the cycle network around Preston and encourage cycling.
  • Provide a north-south link in the central core of the city, completing the gap in the existing cycle network.
  • Create an attractive people friendly, greener street scene and walking /cycling environment.
  • Improve footfall, use of street and dwell time to support local businesses.
  • Support a vibrant street scene.
  • Support alfresco dining/ pavement cafes.
  • Increase social cohesion.
  • To be an integral part of the connection between Friargate North and Fishergate, linking the UCLAN campus with the City Centre.
  • Improve the ecological and environmental value as well as the biodiversity of the area through planting and street trees.

Timescales

Friargate South/Cheapside:

  • Construction on site Autumn 2024
  • Completion Spring 2025

Visualisation of the proposed Friargate South arrangement

Visualisation of the proposed Friargate South arrangement

Frequently Asked Questions

When will the works take place?

Friargate South - The improvement works are planned to start on site on Friargate South / Cheapside in Autumn 2024 and will be completed in late Spring 2025.

Orchard Street - There is no fixed timescale for when the works will take place as currently funding is not secured for delivering the proposed Orchard Street scheme. If funding is secured over the next 12 months, the Council will explore carrying  out the works to coincide with the timescales for the main works on Friargate South, if feasible.

How long will the works take?

The works on site at Friargate South/ Cheapside are expected to take approximately 6-7 months. 

Where will the works take place?

The location of the proposed works are shown on the plans on this page and in the  Friargate South Project consultation document (PDF) [5MB] .

Will businesses stay open throughout the works?

Businesses will remain open for the duration of the works.

What will the proposed public realm works look like?

The proposed works are shown on the plans and visuals on this page and in the  Friargate South Project consultation document (PDF) [5MB]

How will servicing and deliveries be managed?

We will liaise with individual businesses and properties prior to the works commencing and agree what they require. We will then plan the works around this. Inevitably there will be some disruption during the works but our contracting partner will ensure this is minimised and will work with businesses to ensure deliveries, refuse collection etc are managed appropriately.

Who is carrying out the works

The City Council is delivering the scheme with its delivery construction partner Eric Wright Civil Engineering (EWCE).  EWCE are part of the Eric Wright Group, which is a locally based company and a company delivering significant social value.    

How is the scheme being funded?

This project for Friargate South/ Cheapside is being delivered through the 'Levelling Up Active Preston Investment Programme'. It is being funded with a Levelling Up grant from the government, and match funding from Lancashire County Council.

There is currently no funding for delivering the Orchard Street scheme. Funding is being explored from other sources.

Will there be disruption whilst the works are being carried out?

The contractor carrying out the work will endeavour to keep any disruption and inconvenience to a minimum. Liaison via a 'one to one' with businesses/traders directly affected will take place when the works are programmed to start. This will provide clarity to the traders of what works will happen and when, and how steps will be taken to minimise any disruption.

What are the next steps after this engagement exercise?

Feedback from the consultation exercise will be considered. Some changes may be required to be made to the scheme as a result.

Following these, a number of statutory processes with be progressed. When the various statutory and Council approvals are in place, preparations will be made to start on site.

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