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All change for Bicester town centre
MAJOR changes to Bicester’s town centre road network will come into force on Easter Sunday.
Oxfordshire County Council devised the £1.3m scheme, funded by developers, to tackle congestion and improve cycle and pedestrian links.
From 6am on Sunday, March 31, a series of changes will come into effect.
They include access to North Street and Roman Way from the Banbury and Buckingham Road roundabout being closed off. Traffic in St John’s Street and North Street will become two-way instead of the current one-way.
Traffic lights at the junction of Field Street and St John’s Street have been replaced with a new mini-roundabout and a new zebra crossing has been put in place.
There will also be a new roundabout at the junction of Manorsfield Road and St John’s Street. And although vehicles will be able to turn right out of Bucknell Road towards the town centre, there will be no right turn into Bucknell Road from Field Street.
Over the next few days leaflets will be delivered to households across Bicester to make residents aware of the changes.
It comes ahead of the arrival of a major new Sainsbury’s in the town centre.
The changes proved controversial, with businesses in North Street fearing it would affect trade. But residents backed it with a petition in support.
Lynn Wright, owner of Bicester Beds in Market Square, said: “Any road improvements are going to be a benefit to Bicester. “But what they are doing are very big improvements so I just hope they have got it right.”
Rodney Rose, the council’s deputy leader, said: “The changes due to come into being are a key part of the overall scheme and should make a positive impact on journeys made into Bicester. Work on the Banbury and Buckingham Road roundabout be done throughout April and May.