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Southport Reporter® covering the news on Merseyside.

Date:- 28 May 2007

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Traffic management for James Street improvement works

WORK begins this week on a 4 phase £2m package of improvements to James Street which will mean temporary road closures and diversions until the end of the year.  The work is being carried out by Merseytravel in partnership with Liverpool City Council, Merseyrail and Network Rail and is part of the £73m City Centre Movement Strategy (CCMS) which aims, through road improvements, to provide a balanced and sustainable transport system accessible to all and with agreement to provide high grade materials in the work.

The 1st phase begins on Tuesday, 29 May 2007, and will last until 31 August 2007, when James Street will be made 1-way eastbound (towards the city centre) before rush hour at 6am.  The work, along the north side of James Street between The Strand and Fenwick Street, will include removal of existing paving and kerbs, drainage improvements, constructing new bus lay-bys, the laying of new paving and the placement of lights on buildings.  The 1st phase will also include the construction of concrete foundations by the station, which will support a new rail station canopy. 

During the 1st week of July, from 7pm to 7am, Fenwick Street and Castle Street will also be closed for excavation works and the placement of new ducting. Diversion routes will be clearly signed and further notice will be given when dates are confirmed and statutory procedures are in place.  Existing bus stops located along the north side of the street will be closed except for the stop located by Castle Moat House. Eastbound bus services will use existing stops on Lord Street, while westbound services will be diverted to existing stops on Water Street. Existing westbound bus stops will also be closed.

Cllr Mike Storey, executive member for regeneration, said:- “These improvements are necessary for one of the main accesses into the city centre, the waterfront and the commercial district and a full and thorough consultation has taken place with all those in the vicinity.  James Street lies on an important pedestrian route and current projects on the same route are using high specification, attractive materials and discussions are taking place to use the same in this project.  This is a very large and significant undertaking and as the construction progresses every effort will be made to keep the public informed and all the partners in the work are committed to keeping disruption to a minimum. Road closures, diversions and the one-way system are necessary to ensure the safety of workers and the public alike.  The Wirral loop line, which has been closed for five weeks, reopens on Monday, May 28, reflecting our seamless and integrated partnership working and this philosophy will continue.  The work will result in high quality footways and lighting and create a positive impression to those who use James Street to access the city’s attractions.”

Neil Scales, Chief Executive and Director General of Merseytravel, added:- "These plans will have an important role in improving access to the commercial and retail heart of the city. The James Street interchange will be a vital link to Liverpool One, the new Arena and Convention Centre and to the new developments at Pier Head.  James Street is already an important interchange and, as the city grows towards 2008 and beyond, it will become even more so. The aim is to improve public transport facilities for everyone using James Street, whether they are visiting, living or working in the city.”

During the weekend of the Mathew Street Festival in August all works will stop, traffic and pedestrian barriers will be removed where possible and the area will be made safe.  The 1st phase will also require the removal of the existing taxi bay and no temporary bay will be provided.

Respect success in Liverpool

A week-long operation to improve life for people living in the Tuebrook and Stoneycroft areas of Liverpool is being hailed a massive success. 

The Respect initiative, to tackle anti social behaviour and other challenges, ended last Sunday. 

It was organised by Liverpool First partners including the city council, Merseyside Police, Mersey Fire and Rescue Service and the Primary Care Trust and others.

A detailed analysis of the work of all of the agencies involved has shown it has resulted in:-

• 75 tonnes of rubbish placed in 52 community skips

• 15 sites cleared of fly tipping and 20 pieces of graffiti removed

• A full litter pick up of all parks and playgrounds

• 4 new alley gates fitted

• 34 people prosecuted for dropping litter

• 45 vehicles seized during roadside checks, with another 48 declared unroadworthy

• 54 people arrested by Merseyside Police for attempted murder, assault, burglary and theft

• 9 addresses raided resulting in £15,000 being seized and drugs and stolen designer clothing

• 28 children stopped by truancy officers for being out of school

• 32 litres of alcohol seized from youths

• 55 visits to licensed premises resulting in 4 warnings issued for breaching their license

Councillor Colin Eldridge, Liverpool city council’s executive member for community safety, said:- “These figures show the scale of this unprecedented operation and how it has made a major impact on improving the life of the local community. 

It shows how we can work together in new and imaginative ways to further improve the quality of the environment and people’s lives. 

This is not just a one-off operation - it is part of a sustainable plan to continually tackle the issues that local people want dealt with. 

We will be rolling out similar operations in other parts of the city over the next few months.”

Merseyside Police Chief Inspector Kevin Johnson said:- “As part of Merseyside Police's ongoing total policing initiative we have targeted our efforts, together with our partners, to achieve significant results against criminals and those that engage in anti-social behaviour. 

These results reflect the work of a number of agencies and can be seen as a positive and major step towards improving the quality of life for our local communities. 

This week of action is the first of many and our achievements during this week will serve to further encourage partnership working both in this area and in other parts of Liverpool.”

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