Closure of Tyndall Avenue


The university has submitted an application to close Tyndall Avenue to traffic, remodel it as a pedestrian and cycle route and to manage it as part of their estate. Bus routes will be diverted via S Michael’s Park.

KCG has raised concerns over this proposal at pre-app stage (see attached) and will be writing regarding the proposals now submitted for planning consent.

There are three applications:

17/06169/F (main application)

17/06170/LA (listed building application)

17/06171/F (demolition in conservation area)

All can be found on Bristol City Council website (

We would encourage people to write in regarding the application, which can be done online.

The deadline for comments is 4th January 2018

This plan can be viewed on our noticeboards


Our Response to the Pre-Application August 2017

Kingsdown Conservation Group (the Group) is grateful for the recent opportunity to see the current version of the University’s proposals for Tyndall Avenue and St Michael’s Park.
The Group notes that there appears to be a tacit understanding between the City Council and the University that the desire to “maintain two-way vehicular traffic” on Tyndall Avenue described in the University’s Strategic Master Plan, SPD 11, has been abandoned; indeed, the “Stopping up of Tyndall Avenue” was a requirement of the brief written by the University with regard to its present enterprise of re-landscaping Tyndall Avenue.
If it is the case that the City Council has accepted the principal of overturning SPD 11 in this respect, the Group sees no benefit in prolonging the argument, although it recognises that the problematic matters associated with privatisation of a public street concerning rights of access, behaviour, assembly and so forth, should be aired as soon as possible.
Despite the efforts of consultants to present St Michael’s Park as a feasible alternative thoroughfare, there remains a strong feeling that St Michael’s Park will not easily carry the volume of traffic required. Of particular concern to the Group, the turning circle of buses seems to have caused a proposal to realign the pavement at the south-eastern corner of the boundary wall of the Queen Anne, Grade II listed Oldbury House. Historic England’s listing description particularly notes both the symmetry of the entrance front of the building and its wrought-iron front garden railings; neither should be upset. 
At some later date, the restricted scale of the junction of St Michael’s Park and St Michael’s Hill caused by execution of the University’s present grand project should not be used as an argument to support a proposal to demolish Twist and Whitley’s increasingly valued Arts and Social Sciences Library.
The Group is not persuaded of the virtue of the loud, swirling paving proposed for Tyndall Avenue. It is felt that the orthogonal character of the street should inform the landscape of the space between the buildings. The proposed, diverting pattern-making seems to be intended to conflict with the established streetscape: it would lead one’s attention away from the experience of being at the core of the institution. Each building’s architectural qualities should be celebrated, as the street presents of series of stylistic approaches, that in combination tell a valuable story of the development of the University.
While the Group welcomes the ambition to extend the ecology of flora and fauna of The Royal Fort into Tyndall Avenue, the proposed planting of stilt hedges, trees and other associated features should make the most of the present geometry of architectural form, mass and perspectives, rather than present the onlooker with confusing cross-currents, scattered with the misplaced forms of a retreating tsunami.

3 comments on “Closure of Tyndall Avenue”

It’s about Bristol Uni moved OUT of central Bristol!

Buildings turned into student accomodation instead of for locals forces them to commute and create congestion

Off street parking empty and unused at weekends and out of term time.

This is a PUBLIC road and should stay that way!

I appreciate the Kingsdown Conservation Society’s view on this proposal. I approve and welcome the idea of pedestrianisation. Tyndall Park Road road is often full of pedestrians and it would be ideal to remove cars. The road would be perfectly suited to becoming an extension of Royal Fort Gardens which are a beautiful part of Kingsdown. But I agree about the buses. Maybe buses could continue down St Michael’s Hill and turn right on the Road with the children’s hospital on it? I’d like to see St Michael’s Hill pedestrianised, and maybe made into bus & taxi only? I admit my initial response to the urban greening design was that it could become dated. Currently the Road is very grey and broken up visually with cars and car access. If pedestrianised there would be space to establish proper gardens in the front of many of the buildings. The middle area’s could be resurfaced & paved, but generally there would be the potential for creating beautiful green spaces. I worry that the current design is tinkering around at the edges and that it has too much hard landscaping.

So it would seem that none of the problems with diverting traffic, particularly bus movements, via St Michael’s Park have been resolved. The risks to pedestrians, many of whom are children, will remain, and I can’t imagine that the parents of those children attending the university nursery will be too impressed at having the added inconvenience and danger of a bus stop immediately outside the nursery gates.
There will also be considerable problems created at the 4-way junction of St Michael’s Hill, St Michael’s Park and Myrtle Road. The left turn out if St Michael’s Park is very tight, and as noted contains Oldbury House and its boundary walls. It is difficult to see how a bus will manage this. The junction is already busy given that Myrtle Road is used as a “rat run” from Horfield Road, and a major danger for pedestrians. Something substantive in terms of crossings will be required to ensure their safety if this proposal is to go ahead.
Of course there is an alternative for the buses, at least going from Woodland Road to St Michael’s Hill, which would be for them to use University Walk, Tankards Close and Royal Fort Road. But the university isn’t suggesting that, as although it would mitigate many of the problems along St Michael’s Park, it would mean that they would not get all the benefit at little or no cost to their own operations. Why am I not surprised?

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