Plans to pedestrianise Stevenson Square taken to the public

  • Tuesday 30 November 2021

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A picture of Stevenson Square at sunset.

Stevenson Square

Stevenson Square in the Northern Quarter could be fully pedestrianised under new plans which are to be put to the public.

A final consultation is being launched today which sets out Manchester City Council’s ambition to make the Square one of the most attractive destinations in the city. 

Hundreds of people have let the Council know what they wanted from Stevenson Square and the surrounding area through two earlier consultations. Through these exercises the Council learned the main priorities for residents and businesses in the area were: 

  • The full pedestrianisation of Stevenson Square. 
  • Having a space where people could sit and relax. 
  • A safe, traffic-free space that they could move through. 
  • Elements which reflected the character of the Northern Quarter including space for outdoor dining, public art and planted areas allowing a ‘connection to nature’.

With this in mind the public will be asked for their views on the Council’s proposals before improvement works begin in 2022.  A consultation is now live, running to Tuesday 21 December. This can be found by going to

Some of the key changes to the area include: 

  • The pedestrianisation of Stevenson Square. New seating and bike racks will be installed, new trees planted and sustainable draining systems (SUDS) installed.
  • A two-way cycle lane will run through Stevenson Square at the same level as the pavement, with tactile crossings put in place and new signage for cyclist wayfaring.
  • Pedestrian and cyclist crossings will be installed at the junctions of Oldham Street/Hilton Street, and Newton Street/Hilton Street. Footpaths will be widened in the area to give more space over to pedestrians.
  • Pay and display bays in Hilton Street will be removed.
  • Some loading bays in the area will be relocated to allow for these changes to be made, whilst still retaining important space for businesses to trade.
  • Additional planting of trees and SUDS where possible will be added to the south-eastern side of Lever Street as part of the City of Trees project. This will be subject to future surveys to find optimum space, and make allowances for underground utilities (gas, water, electric).

Councillor Tracey Rawlins, Manchester City Council’s Executive Member for Environment, said: “I’m incredibly pleased that we're able to take the next step towards creating a more accessible and thriving Northern Quarter.

“Making more space available for people to walk and cycle as well as introducing more green space were just two of the many priorities highlighted to us by residents and businesses throughout the consultations we’ve run.

“The experience of the past year, when more space was given over for pedestrians and cyclists was incredibly positive and signalled a shift in how people want to interact and engage with the city of Manchester.

“I look forward to hearing people’s feedback on this final round of consultation and would encourage residents and businesses to take part.

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