Byres Road: council close to introducing social distancing scheme on busy street

By Ian Marland at

City officials are close to having a scheme for social distancing on Byres Road.

Glasgow city council said detailed plans would be revealed “in the very near future”.

Nothing has been shared yet, but any temporary measure will likely see the loss of parking bays.

Byres Road

Byres Road: temporary measure will likely see the loss of parking bays

Typically, works involve plastic sand-filled safety barriers placed in the road to widen footways.

Some schemes make room for cycling – but it’s not clear how this will take shape on Byres Road.

Kelvin Way was closed off in May in one of the first measures by the council.

The authority secured £10m in Scottish government funding for works across the city.

The streets around George Square are the latest zone to see emergency measures.


Plastic barriers for segregated active travel were placed along several roads this week.

News of the Byres Road scheme comes as traders call for help to balance the needs of motorists.

Local business owner John Turner said traders were expecting the measures to be brought in.

But he hoped motorists could be helped by easing parking charges in nearby streets.

He said his group was in “regular contact” with the council about the social distancing plans.

St Vincent Place, Glasgow

Social distancing measures in St Vincent Place, Glasgow. Photo: Anna Richardson

Last week, traders called for the re-introduction of parking charges in the area to be delayed until after Christmas.

However, active travel groups say recovery would be better served by people cycling and walking to the shops.

Cycling group GoBike Glasgow said the city was moving too slowly in rolling out social distancing schemes.

Co-convenor Thomas Cornwallis said: “There is a feeling that Glasgow is not moving fast enough.

“Places like London appear to be doing things really quickly.

“We know they probably don’t have enough staff (in Glasgow), and there are Covid restrictions.

“But maybe there’s a political-will problem as well.

“We think the council should be moving faster.”

‘Emergency powers’

John Turner said: “There is going to be quite a group of people who will be uncertain about wanting to use public transport at the moment.

“There is going to be more car use and we need to allow for provision for that, so that people come and enjoy all that Byres Road and the Lanes have to offer.”

A council spokesman said: “We hope to unveil detailed plans for Spaces for People on Byres Rd in the very near future.

“The Spaces for People programme is being introduced through the use of emergency powers within the roads legislation.

“We hope to have the specific safety measures that create the additional space on the ground on Byres Road as soon as possible.”

The spokesman said resumption of parking charges would happen much sooner than January.

He said: “We are expecting parking charges for on-street bays to resume in the coming weeks and we hope to confirm a date very soon.”

  • Title image shows social distancing measures on Queen Street in Glasgow. Photo courtesy of Anna Richardson