Important Changes to Roads in Birmingham Westside

If you live locally to Westside or travel through Five Ways and Broad Street you may have to rethink your route and timing.

I attended a drop-in session about this, to get more detailed facts about  the new restrictions.

Article by Geoff Caine

A leaflet about upcoming traffic changes, focused on Birmingham Westside, has been distributed to local Businesses and Residents.

I was seeking some clarification of this leaflet Traffic Changes in Your Area” which outlined various temporary and permanent road and traffic changes around Broad Street, Ryland Street, Grosvenor Street West and Sheepcote Street during and after the construction of the Midland Metro Tram (and Sprint Bus).

Below are my notes from the drop-in session.

Information Obtained:

♦    The various changes will take place from early June 2019 for 14 months.

♦    The Five Ways underpass will close to all traffic from 3 June 2019. Eventually, when the Metro extension to 54 Hagley Road is operational sometime in 2021, the underpass will be used by the Metro Tram plus buses and taxis only.

♦    Track works are about to commence in Broad Street having completed the utility upgrades and enabling work.

♦    During track laying areas of, and accesses to, Broad Street will be temporarily closed as needed.

♦    Sometime in the near future a stretch of Broad Street will be closed for 7 months including the area from Grandville Street up to Ryland Street .
During this time traffic cannot enter Sheepcote Street from Broad Street.
Instead traffic from Hagley Road entering Broad street via Five Ways will be diverted by a left turn along Ryland Street. Traffic can then turn right into Grosvenor Street West, then left into Sheepcote Street.

♦    The Grosvenor Street/Sheepcote Street junction will be controlled by traffic lights including the pedestrian crossing there.

♦    It is the longer term intention to encourage traffic to use the Ladywood Middleway instead of the Ryland Street and Sheepcote Street rat runs.

Queries Outstanding:

♦    During the construction, the routing of the buses which are currently diverted from Broad Street to  Sheepcote Street was not ascertained.

♦    No firm date for the implementation of the new traffic light junction of Grosvenor Street West and Sheepcote Street was ascertained.

My Observations:

♦    In the leaflet, the statement “we are expecting more traffic to use routes around Grosvenor Street, Sheepcote Street West and Ryland Street” is dependent on what period one considers. In fact for the period of closure of Broad Street at the end of Sheepcote Street, traffic from Granville Street and other roads into Broad Street nearer the city will not be able to use Sheepcote Street.

♦    The allowable use of the local roads during construction will be dictated by what works are to be carried out and will vary with time (see NOTE below).

NOTE: For further detailed information on what type of traffic can use which sections of the local roads during the various construction phases, see the previous post on this web site:

Metro Tram Westside – The Details and Effects on Local Traffic

Attendees Suggestions

♦    Attendees of the drop-in suggested that news of the effect of associated works should be channelled through a single distribution point. At the moment it is confusing to receive information from the various development organisations.
This was illustrated at the drop-in by the presence of many representatives of these organisations.

♦    Such news should be made clear with maps and diagrams, and should be well structured. Representatives of development organisations at the meeting seemed receptive to the suggestion. The Westside Weekly publications could be the vehicle for this.

♦    Attendees made the point that the Westside Weekly layout could be improved including  the visual structure, inclusion of illustrative maps and larger font.

♦    An online version would greatly facilitate these improvements to give a valuable source of local information.

♦    Furthermore it was suggested that interested parties should be able to register online to receive email notification of the publishing of new Westside Weekly online editions.

♦    Attendees commented that, in the past, traffic rerouting had been insufficiently publicised resulting in initial confusion to users and long traffic queues.

Article by Geoff Caine

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