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2002: Street Improvements – Monmouth Street, Providing an Exemplar

A more attractive and civilised street. A more attractive and civilised street.

In 2002, the Trust re-established its partnership with Camden, this time working with Shaftesbury PLC who had become the area's main freeholder. Monmouth Street was chosen as the next thoroughfare for improvement.  A major change to the earlier template was the use of dressed setts (flat cobbles) which have numerous advantages over raised ones, including less vehicular noise and an easier walking surface for pedestrians. This format proved extremely popular with both residents and retailers and has been visited by officers from many other local authorities.

The Princess Royal admires the multi-coloured dressed setts in Monmouth Street.

The Princess Royal admires the multi-coloured dressed setts in Monmouth Street.

Tim Long and David Jenkins from Camden devised and oversaw this scheme, making refinements to an earlier template. The scheme was part of the 'Clear Zones' project, which aimed to improve the public realm and pedestrian movement in Central London. Camden added to the overall street furniture harmonisation by providing new litter bins bearing the parish crest. The total cost of the scheme was £720,000 which was covered by a number of S.106 planning gain funds, matched by Shaftesbury PLC via a donation to the Trust.

Monmouth Street has won four awards (Camden Design Awards, 2006, helped Camden to Borough of the Year and Partnership of the Year 2007 for walking and public realm, and the Royal Town Planning Institute / Transport Planning Network Award, 2008). The Monmouth Street template  has been copied throughout the West End and has become the standard template for the Covent Garden Area, adopted by Westminster City Council in their 'Westminster Way' and used by Capco in King Street and TfL in Shaftesbury Avenue. 

After the work had been carried out, numerous problems arose, compounded by Thames Water's Victorian Mains Replacement Proramme, where the Trust queried their reinstatement proposals from the outset. The Trust is currently discussing with Camden how to resolve these problems.

Camden's final draft plans for Monmouth Street.

Camden's final draft plans for Monmouth Street.

2002 Traffic Management Meeting.

2002: Traffic Management Meeting.

2004: Environment Committee discusses Camden's scheme for Monmouth Street. Proposed footway-widening swapped from West to East.

2004: Environment Committee discusses Camden's scheme for Monmouth Street. Proposed footway-widening swapped from West to East.

2005: Westminster City Council's Chris Mason gives a talk on carriage-way treatments to the Environment Committee.

2005: Westminster City Council's Chris Mason gives a talk on carriage-way treatments to the Environment Committee.

Monmouth Street in the 1960s.

Monmouth Street in the 1960s.

Monmouth Street North before works.

Monmouth Street North before works.

Monmouth Street down to Upper St Martin's Lane.

Monmouth Street down to Upper St Martin's Lane.

Monmouth Street South and Shelton Street before works.

Monmouth Street South and Shelton Street before works.

 View from Neal Street before works.

 View from Neal Street before works.

Traditional setts in Earlham Street East, 1992 works.

Traditional setts in Earlham Street East, 1992 works.

Multi-coloured dressed (flat) setts.

Multi-coloured dressed (flat) setts.

Breaking out the kerb, first stage.

Breaking out the kerb, first stage.

Laying new York Stone paving.

Laying new York Stone paving.

Laying paving and maintaining access.

Laying paving and maintaining access.

New York Stone paving on widened footway.

New York Stone paving on widened footway.

Relaying kerbs to new line and level to enable carriageway works and new levels.

Relaying kerbs to new line and level to enable carriageway works and new levels.

Breaking out carriageway. (1)Breaking out carriageway. (2)

Breaking out carriageway.

Concrete road base.

Concrete road base.

New multi-coloured dressed setts.

New multi-coloured dressed setts.

Hand-laying setts.

Hand-laying setts.

Hand-pointing.

Hand-pointing.

Camden's Team: David Jenkins, engineer; Wajid Majid, engineer; Liz Halstead, principal transport planner; Tim Long, transport planner; and David Reidy, Trust's link officer.

Camden's Team: David Jenkins, engineer; Wajid Majid, engineer; Liz Halstead, principal transport planner; Tim Long, transport planner; and David Reidy, Trust's link officer.

Arial view of new setts. (1)Arial view of new setts. (2)

Arial views of new setts.

A more attractive street.

A more attractive street.

Monmouth Street to Upper St Martin's Lane.

Monmouth Street to Upper St Martin's Lane.

Monmouth Street North.

Monmouth Street North.

Delegation from Cambridge City Council on site visit to Monmouth Street.

Delegation from Cambridge City Council on site visit to Monmouth Street.

2008 RTPI Award for Monmouth Street Improvements, collected by Camden's Liz Halstead and Tim Long.

2008 RTPI Award for Monmouth Street Improvements, collected by Camden's Liz Halstead and Tim Long.

Streetscape cartoon.

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