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PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP FOR OXFORD STREET

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The Evening Standard runs a feature (p31) on the capital's busiest shopping street, Oxford Street, and the huge tas...
The Evening Standard runs a feature (p31) on the capital's busiest shopping street, Oxford Street, and the huge task of maintaining its tourist appeal, to ward off threats from out-of-town shopping centres.

The revamped trees, lamps, widened footpaths and paving have been a joint venture between store owners and Westminster City Council. Grosvenor Estates, which owns a large slice of the south side, has contributed too.

But the new fixtures and features require much up-keep. Already the new paving is cracking, well-littered and tarnished by spent chewing-gum. Store-owners would like to see more traffic-free days, especially on the Sundays leading up to Christmas, in the style of New York's Fifth Avenue.

However, residents in neighbouring streets where traffic, in particular buses, would be diverted will oppose any such plans.

The paper also reports that the re-paving process is rather slow: Tottenham Court Road will not be reached until 1997, 'just in time for CrossRail demolition work to throw it all into turmoil again'.
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