The transformation of one of Europe’s busiest bus routes is now officially complete – marking the culmination of one of the most ambitious highway projects Manchester city centre has ever seen.
“The new look Oxford Road is great news for students, staff and visitors, many of whom already cycle or travel by bus to the University.
Oxford Road is quieter and cleaner, safer for pedestrians and travel times on public transport have been reduced at peak times”.Diana Hampson, Director of Estates and Facilities at the University of Manchester and Chair of the Oxford Road Corridor Partnership
Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) today celebrated the completion of Oxford Road alongside some of its key partners, including the University of Manchester, Manchester Metropolitan University, the Royal Northern College of Music and Central Manchester Hospitals.
The new-look Oxford Road, complete with ‘Dutch-style’ cycle lanes, new bus facilities, improved pedestrian spaces and better public transport links, is now a real benchmark for highway design in the city.
Alongside the Leigh to Ellenbrook guided busway, Oxford Road forms a key part of the wider £122 million Bus Priority Package – a five-year programme that set out to deliver quicker and more reliable bus journeys for thousands of people each day.
In partnership with Manchester City Council, TfGM worked closely with key Oxford Road institutions and businesses for more than four years to ensure that the final design met with the needs of some of the region’s best education, health, employment and leisure facilities.
The now complete Bus Priority Package has seen the delivery of new and improved bus links through Manchester city centre across 25 miles of the network, from Leigh and Salford in the west and Middleton in the north.
Including a guided busway, bus priority measures along the East Lancs Road, cross-city bus links and a completely overhauled Oxford Road, the project is one of the most ambitious TfGM has ever delivered.
On the opposite end of the scheme, the Leigh to Ellenbrook guided busway opened in April 2016 and the number of people using it continues to grow. The Vantage service, operated by First, sees around 50,000 passenger journeys made each week, while 3.27 million journeys have been made since it opened.
The new bus priority measures through Manchester city centre and Oxford Road are also benefitting many more passengers by providing quicker and more reliable journeys in and out of the city.