DISCUSSIONS surrounding the restriction of traffic on a main road in Taunton are taking place.

Although it has not yet been decided what the restrictions will be or how they will be put in place, a working group has agreed some forms of traffic should be restricted on East Street.

The road was closed during the pandemic to help shoppers to social distance.

It re-opened in May for the first time in almost a year, due to severe traffic congestion around Taunton due to roadworks on Paul Street.

READ MORE: East Street, Taunton, re-opens to traffic for the first time in a year

The working group set up to discuss the potential road closure includes representatives from the Taunton Chamber of Commerce, Avon and Somerset Police, Somerset Disability Engagement Service, Buses of Somerset, Taunton Taxi Association, Taunton Area Cycling Campaign, and Taunton Transition Town.

The working group sessions also include Somerset County Council (SCC) Highways and Transport policy officers, Somerset West and Taunton (SWT) officers and the town centre manager, alongside representatives from Stantec, who are consultants on the design and road safety elements.

After two working group sessions, everyone agreed some forms of traffic should be restricted on East Street.

Cllr Mike Rigby, executive member for planning and transport, said: “The workshops have been valuable in providing an opportunity to exchange ideas and opinions on the council’s long standing commitment to create an environment that is better for residents and shoppers, helping businesses to thrive while allowing for improved traffic flow around Taunton town centre.

“Each stakeholder has their own priorities and finding the balance between all groups will be difficult.

“But there has been healthy and respectful debate from all parties which will inform design options that SWT, working in collaboration with SCC Highways, will shape into proposals for the future of East Street.”

How the restriction is put in place is yet to be decided, as this depends on funding from Active Travel.

Once the proposals for the restrictions have been drawn up and discussed by the working groups, they will be presented by SWT to elected members.

There will then be a public consultation.