Controversial plans to ban vehicles from some of Aberdeen’s busiest streets have been pushed forward.
Aberdeen City Council yesterday outlined proposals to make several streets in the west of the city centre off-limits from 10pm to 5am throughout the week.
Certain stretches of Justice Mill Lane, Bon Accord Terrace, Langstane Place, Gordon Street, Windmill Brae, Windmill Lane, Bath Street, and Bridge Street would be affected if the plans come to fruition.
The authority believes the move would make the streets “a safer and more welcoming environment”.
But Aberdeen Central MSP, Kevin Stewart, last night criticised the move and accused council bosses of being “hellbent on ignoring the local community in favour of half-hearted pedestrianisation measures”.
He blasted the decision to only partially pedestrianise Broad Street in 2018 as a “bizarre situation” and said the latest vehicle ban came “against the wishes of local residents”.
The SNP politician added: “Nothing about this makes sense, and none of this will help combat antisocial behaviour as crowds disperse from the nightclubs in the area.
“The council must put a hold on these plans until proper consultation has taken place.”
Council chiefs have explained that certain vehicles would be exempt from the proposed restrictions.
Cyclists, emergency service vehicles, those displaying a blue badge and also any vehicle accessing an off-street car parking area directly adjacent to the affected roads would be allowed access to the streets.
The move follows calls from several major city retail leaders for cars to be banned from Union Street between Market Street and Bridge Street, in an effort to increase footfall.
Pedestrianisation of certain parts of the city is a key part of the 25-year city centre masterplan.
In April 2018, councillors voted to commission a number of studies to provide evidence in support of the closures.
Elected members heard that the pedestrianisation idea had proven popular with businesses in the streets, especially bars, who say their customers would no longer have to dodge traffic.
Anyone wishing to object to the latest proposals should send details of the grounds for objection, including their name and address, in writing firstname.lastname@example.org by February 10.