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For many years, Digbeth High Street has been an urban motorway, delivering cars into the very centre of Birmingham. While the area around New Street and the Bullring has become a commercial centre, with a welcoming environment, Digbeth High Street has stagnated with most people choosing to avoid the fumes. This is set to changed with the delivery of the Metro Eastside extension, which will eventually extend from the centre of Birmingham to the airport.
In preparation for the construction of Curzon Street Station for HS2, Birmingham City Council is proposing to install a bus gate on Moor Street Queensway outside of the train station. When Curzon Street Station is built, Park Street, which currently carries most of the private motor traffic travelling through that area towards Digbeth, will be closed. That closure will push all that private motor traffic on to Moor Street Queensway, greatly increasing the congestion on there and slowing down all the buses unless action is taken to prevent that.
Following a series of consultations earlier this year, Birmingham City Council has launched a new consultation for Sherlock Street aimed at improving bus times heading out of the city. The initial proposal was to remove the cycle lanes on the first part of Sherlock Street, to make space for a new bus lane. The strong response to that consultation has sent Birmingham City Council back to the drawing board, and instead they are proposing a bus gate to stop private motor traffic blocking the exit of Sherlock Street onto Belgrave Middleway.