DRIVERS could face congestion charges in Winchester if plans to cut city centre traffic fail to work, according to a new draft city strategy.

It comes as Hampshire County Council, working with Winchester City Council, launched a consultation over proposals for the Winchester Movement Strategy.

The ‘Emerging Strategy Document’, released earlier this week, suggested a range of measures in a bid to cut city-centre traffic and improve air quality. They include:

  • increasing capacity for park and ride services to keep cars out of the city centre;
  • giving buses priority over cars through measures such as bus gates in Southgate Street and Chesil Street, which would only allow public transport and bikes to use the road, and bus lanes in Andover Road;
  • consolidating parking in larger out-of-city-centre car parks rather than increasing city centre spaces;
  • enhancing cycling and pedestrian routes across the city with a “reallocation of road space along the full length of North Walls”;
  • and changing parts of the one-way system to include two-way traffic between Friarsgate and Easton Lane, allowing drivers in and out of the city without having to circle around the entire system, reducing St Georges Street to one lane with spaces for cyclists, bus stops and deliveries, and improving pedestrian priority for Jewry Street.

If those measure fail to improve congestion in the city, a range of charging zones “could be considered”.

The strategy is being put together by both councils to help shape transport in the city over the next 20-30 years. Following the current consultation, which runs until 11.59pm on January 13, a final document is expected to be published next spring to help deliver improvements and secure funding.

It says: “Traffic demand is set to grow and, over time, more people are expected to come to Winchester for a range of purposes

“Getting in and around the city easily is vital to the future prosperity of Winchester. It’s a great place to live and work, as well as attracting a significant number of visitors every year.

“We’re working with colleagues at Winchester City Council to develop an innovative transport strategy designed to support the city’s businesses and economic prosperity while at the same time making sure it continues to offer an excellent quality of life for those in the community.

“We had an excellent response to the first phase of the consultation last year where we asked people for their views on traffic, parking, air quality, accessibility and public transport in Winchester. These consultation responses have been used alongside traffic data and modelling to establish priority areas for change, and what transport and other measures we need to include in the strategy.

“We are now keen to hear people’s views on initial ideas such as providing more park and ride services and better bus, walking and cycling access to the city centre.”

To take part in the consultation, visit, call 0300 555 1388, or email