Dunstable - giving back your high street

Current works on Dunstable High Street

Thanks to funding support from the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership with an allocation from the Local Growth Fund, we are now entering the third and most significant phase of works to improve the look and feel, to encourage people to spend more time in the town centre. The next phase of works will start week commencing 10 May and will include remodelling High Street North and changing the traffic light timings and installing a four-way crossing at Church Street and Dunstable High Street.

Church Street / High Street crossing (Autumn and Winter 2021)

We will change the crossroads to be more pedestrian-friendly and enable a better flow of traffic throughout the town where the High Street, Church Street and West Street meet. The junction still needs to be controlled with traffic lights, but it will be made smaller and the pedestrian crossings will be moved closer to the junction and combined with the junction traffic lights. They will be changed from staggered crossings to straight-across Toucan crossings (crossings where both pedestrians and cyclists cross the road) on all four sides of the crossroads. This means pedestrians won't need to walk as far to get across the junction, and traffic will no longer be held up by additional pedestrian crossings. The sequencing of the traffic lights will be improved and can be changed by us if necessary, to help traffic flow, for example if the M1 is closed.

High Street remodelling (Spring 2021 to Spring 2022)

The now considerably broader pavements will be paved with honey-coloured ‘Saxon’ paving, the existing planters will be re-clad and new benches and other street furniture installed along with new road surfaces, signage and street markings.

The road surfaces will be replaced and laid out with new markings along with new signs and a cycle path. Drainage will be improved, trees planted, and the existing planters will be re-clad and planted with ‘rain gardens’ – all measures designed to help prevent future flooding.

There will also be improvements to the central reservation, which will be remodelled to incorporate a more pleasing aesthetic. An additional crossing point in central location will make it easier for pedestrians to cross and landscaping and tree planting will give the feature a more green feel.

As part of our commitment to sustainable transport, new cycle parking will be introduced near Argos as well as seating and the installation of electrical vehicle charging points at the parking bays near the Clock Tower. 

The existing crossing near Albion Street will be removed and replaced with a combined cycle/pedestrian Toucan crossing installed at the Queensway junction with the High Street. A raised table has been installed at the junction of Queensway/High Street/Manchester Place and new traffic signals installed as the junction is reconfigured. 

Mark the entrances to the High Street / town centre with four new gateway features (Spring 2022)

The gateways will provide an inviting entrance to the town centre; help to define the town centre; and indicate to drivers and pedestrians that they are entering a pedestrian-friendly, High Street environment. Three of these gateways will also incorporate drain features that will help take away rainwater.

These gateway features will also include information about the history of Dunstable and have a map to show where places of interest are located, for instance Priory Gardens and Grove House Gardens; Dunstable Town Council; Grove Skate Park; Dunstable Market; Priory Church; Grove Theatre; and the Quadrant Shopping Centre.

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