Nottingham’s £4.5m flagship project to improve transport access and local environment quality to key parts of the city is complete.

The work was funded in part by the City Deal 2012 programme, Nottingham City Council and the European Regional Development Fund to support economic growth in city centre areas.

The Derby Road and Friar Lane improvements are now finished and offer an inviting street scene with attractive paving, spaces and street furniture, along with better traffic management and facilities for pedestrians.

Derby Road has benefited from York Stone pavement and new street furniture to increase its quality and heritage feel. New lampposts have been installed and 15 of these will be lit up with stylish white and gold snow flake Christmas lights this week. New Sweet Gum trees are being planted, complete with metal guards including a bespoke design worked up by artist Chris Campbell with the businesses.  It all adds up to make Derby Road a rewarding place to shop and dine. For motorists the number of parking bays remains the same and the tariff is still £1 per hour.

The Creative Quarter programme has revitalised retail in the Trinity Square, Hockley, Sneinton Market, Castle and Derby Road areas.

Councillor Nick McDonald, Portfolio Holder for Jobs, Growth and Transport at Nottingham City Council, said: “I would like to thank local residents and businesses for their patience and cooperation while these works have been taking place. I hope they agree that the results are worth it. Investment in the infrastructure means that local businesses and retailers are attracting more visitors. The large programme of works has been delivered successfully by the City Council in a compressed timescale. Now Derby Road and Friar Lane, together with the fine array of independent businesses that operate there, are ideal shopping venues, especially for Christmas.

“The benefits are clear for businesses. The works In Hockley have played a major part in it becoming an award winning shopping area and it is certainly worth celebrating the completion of the Creative Quarter project.”

Geoff Williams Chair of the Derby Road Steering Group, said: “The works have caused some difficulties for businesses but we are delighted with the result.  New businesses have opened up and more are coming.  Nottingham’s cognoscenti have always bookmarked Derby Road NG1 as a unique shopping and drinking spot. The restored area keeps shopping meaningful in the high street and connects urban Nottingham traffic.”

Creative Quarter Chief Executive Officer, Kathy McArdle, added: “We’re delighted to see that the Creative Quarter public realm works have now been completed. The works have played a key role in transforming the look and feel of the area. Spaces like Heathcoat Street and Broad Street have dramatically changed with new road surfaces and widened pavements meaning there is more space available for businesses to use and it is a more pedestrian-friendly environment. It has helped to develop a real café culture around those areas, as well as improving their capability of hosting public events like the Hockey Street Fayre and the Green Streets Festival.”