An artist impression of the new Ryde Interchange

Ryde Transport Interchange project

The Ryde Interchange project has reached a major milestone with the removal of all traffic management and the new signal-controlled junction allowing buses to travel directly from the new bus station up George Street now switched on.

Islanders are now being urged to make a special effort to support shops and businesses whose patience during work has been greatly appreciated by Island Roads.

Councillor Phil Jordan, Cabinet member for transport and infrastructure, said: “It gives me great pleasure to announce Ryde Esplanade is open for business!

“We’d urge both residents and visitors to Ryde to support these local businesses which we know have been impacted by the improvement works. They play a vital role in their communities as a service and as employers.

“With everyone’s support they can continue to thrive.”

The removal of current traffic management on the Esplanade saw the re-opening of the westbound lane, between Dover Street and Union Street, following completion of work including resurfacing the section that has been used for temporary bus stops.

The Ryde Interchange Project seeks to provide better travel connectivity as well as much-improved public space for residents and visitors.

The project is primarily funded by Government grant from the Transforming Cities Fund following a successful bid by the Isle of Wight Council, Portsmouth City Council and Hampshire County Council (together as South East Hampshire Rapid Transport) for £55.6m million.

Around £10 million of this has been awarded for the Ryde Interchange improvements of which the highway work is just one element.

A spokesman for Island Roads, which has been working on the highways element of the project, said:  “The removal of the traffic management and opening of the George Street junction is an important milestone in the project. We’d like to thank the local community for their support and understanding during work to date.”

While the tramway pier has now been reinstated for pedestrian use and the highway element is nearing completion, the refurbishment of train station building, and reinstatement of the public toilets in the station, are ongoing but should be completed this summer.

In the interim the temporary toilets provided at the station for the Isle of Wight Festival weekend will be retained until the new facilities are open.