What will it look like?
The southern end of the promenade (from the Sea Terminal to Broadway) will be quite different from the current layout; the northern section (from Broadway to Summerhill Road) will remain very similar to its current layout.
In the southern end, the horse tram lines are removed from the centre of the road and replaced with a single tram line located along the seaward side of the road. The roadway itself will have narrower traffic lanes in each direction, with greater emphasis on pedestrian areas and crossing points. This work will be completed in the winter of 2021/22.
In the northern section, the twin tram lines will remain in the centre of the road, with other facilities such as pedestrian crossing points and parking remaining very similar to the current arrangement.
The junctions at Church Road (Greensills Corner) and Broadway will be completely redesigned to assist with both traffic flow and pedestrian movements. The newly created wider area in front of the Sefton Hotel and Gaiety Theatre will become a meeting place with architectural planting, seating, mood lighting and ergonomic street sculpture. This area will be referred to as the Cultural Area.
Why does Douglas Promenade need to be refurbished?
The existing highway surface and construction layers below the surface have deteriorated over their lifetime and now need to be replaced with new construction materials. The failure in the existing construction makes the highway both uncomfortable for motorists to drive along and in constant need for costly temporary repairs. The recent surface overlay was only intended to be a temporary respite for motorists and does not address the need to replace the failed structure of the road, which will continue to deteriorate.
The reconstructed highway will:-
- Provide a road that will not require further reconstruction for a minimum of 40 years
- Provide a smooth running surface to make journeys far more comfortable and enjoyable for road users
- Improve the appearance of the Promenade for residents and visitors
- Contribute to the lower Douglas regeneration programme.
Will the road need to be dug up again once the work is complete?
To hopefully prevent this from happening along the Promenade, the Department has worked closely with all the following organisations: Manx Utility, Manx Gas, Manx Telecom and Douglas Borough Council to ensure that any old or unsatisfactory equipment is replaced as each section of the Promenade is reconstructed. It is not possible to say nothing will be dug up at some stage in the future because emergencies can happen but we will work closely with them all to ensure we have done everything in our power to minimise these risks.
Where will the Horse Tram lines be located?
Along the northern section of the Promenade, the existing dual tram lines will be replaced on a like-for-like basis with new tram lines in the centre of the road. The existing dual horse tram lines that run along the centre of the highway in the southern section of the Promenade are going to be taken up and replaced with a new single tram line that will run on the seaward side of the road, finishing alongside the Bottleneck car park near to the Sea Terminal building. The transition between the dual track and the single track will happen just north of the Broadway junction.
Maintaining the twin tram lines along the northern section of the Promenade will greatly assist in providing flexibility for the operation of the tram service in future years.
Tram corridor: works to be completed in the Winter of 2021/22.
The new location of the single tram line along the southern section will also provide new advantages to its current location:
- It will be safer for passengers accessing and exiting the tram
- The tram will have its own dedicated corridor
- Traffic flow on the highway will not be restricted by the slow-moving tram
- The tram journey will be a much more pleasurable experience for passengers.
Will the Promenade highway look better after the work is complete?
Yes. The Department is taking this opportunity to use more natural stone paving material (similar to that used on Phase 1 of the work, near the Jubilee clock) to enhance the appearance of the footways and re-establish the Promenade as the gateway to the Island’s capital.
Will car parking spaces be lost once the scheme is complete?
The Department has endeavoured to maintain as many car parking spaces as possible. Overall, there will be a reduction in 130 parking numbers along the full length of the Promenade. Where parking spaces are lost, these have been replaced with other features such as bus laybys, taxi ranks, loading bays etc. to the benefit of public transport and local requirements.
Are cyclists accommodated in the new proposals?
Yes. Cyclists are still permitted to use the Promenade Walkway alongside pedestrians. This has proved to be a popular facility in recent years and it is the Department’s intention for this to continue. It is also proposed to introduce a series of cycle stands along the entire length of the Promenade, providing a suitable location for riders to secure their cycles should they wish to do so.
Are the sea defences being improved?
The Department intends to construct a new 500m long sea defence wall, running from the end of the Marina Gardens north, beyond the junction with Broadway and finishing opposite the Empress Hotel on Central Promenade. These works will cost circa £500,000.
How long will the work take to finish?
The Department started enabling work in September 2018. The work will be done in a number of managed phases in order to minimise disruption to the public and reduce the need for lengthy and complicated traffic management. The whole scheme should be complete within 2 years, including the installation of the new tram lines.
Will there be any disruption during the construction of the work?
Yes – it’s time to start planning your journey, your mode of transport and allowing traveling time.
As with any major highway improvement scheme, traffic flow will be disrupted both on the approach to and through any areas of work. The Department will take every effort to ensure disruption to the public is kept to a minimum. However, safety for both construction workers and the travelling public is of paramount importance to the Department. Therefore as and when required, traffic flow on the Promenade will be controlled using speed reduction measures including narrow lanes, temporary traffic signals and/or one-way flow.
After the works are complete, will my journey time along the Promenade increase or decrease?
The new road layout and modern design techniques introduced along the southern section are expected to reduce average vehicle speeds.
This will be achieved by:-
- Reducing the number of traffic signals and subsequently reducing the ‘stop-start’ effect these have on journeys
- Introducing an environment that encourages vehicle drivers to adopt slower speeds throughout the length of the Promenade.
How much will the scheme cost, including the new tram line?
The entire cost of the project, including the phase 1 work, is expected to fall within the approved budget of £25 million.
Subject to the successful delivery of the Early Contractor Involvement stage, Auldyn construction Limited, will be appointed the contractor for the works.
Where can I find out more information?
We will update this website regularly along with our social media feeds Facebook @mypromisleofman; Twitter @mypromisleofman; Instagram: @mypromisleofman
or you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org/telephone 01624 686363 or our public office is based at the Sea Terminal, Douglas is open Monday to Friday between 9am-4pm.Updated on 24 June 2020