‘Magical’ Makeover Begins For Liverpool’s LGBT Quarter

THE heart of Liverpool’s LGBT quarter is to undergo a radical makeover influenced by the Wizard of Oz.Commencing today (Monday 25 April), Eberle Street will undergo a major transformation removing the tired asphalt construction with a unique paving and lighting scheme paying homage to the Yellow Brick Road and the mythical Land of Oz via it’s connection with Garlands Nightclub and Judy Garland.The works jointly funded by Liverpool BID Company and Liverpool City Council, represent the biggest investment in the City’s ‘Stanley Street Quarter’ for a decade and aim to be complete for the City’s annual Pride celebrations in late July.The innovative scheme celebrates Liverpool’s LGBT community and heritage, and is inspired by the diverse range of entertainment venues in the area such as the Artist Club, Garlands, Passion and Gbar.The current road, footway and concrete kerbing, will make way for a single surface highway consisting of high quality stone which will contrast the existing buildings and a rich palette to a tired, dark street.As the majority of the businesses on Eberle Street are nightclubs adding to Liverpool’s vibrant nightlife, the lighting scheme is critical to the success of the scheme. Bespoke LED Lighting will be provided from catenaries’ suspended from the buildings which complement the shape and structure of the paving below.The design is a creative collaboration between Liverpool BID Company, Liverpool City Council, Amey Consulting and Liverpool based award winning designers BCA Landscape and the works will be carried out by Amey LG and local contractor King Construction. Stakeholders from all of the local businesses have been invited to review, approve and add design input at all stages of the processThe Eberle Street scheme is part of a larger £1.6m programme improving the business area and pedestrian connections north-south between the Commercial District and the retail core of the city centre.The Commercial District BID, which recently won a new 5 year mandate, has invested £1.1m in the two-year programme, raised via a levy on businesses. Liverpool City Council have funded the remaining £500,000, and has utilised their expertise, Consultants and local business to design and develop the BID Streets Scheme.BID Streets has completed significant upgrades to several key streets with improved granite footways and kerbing, road resurfacing, tree planting, heritage street lighting and rationalising and upgrading street furniture. Improvements to footways and lighting on nearby North John Street are approaching completion and further pavements works are planned for Hackins Hey and Tempest Hey.Improved LED street lighting will also be introduced to: Exchange Street East, Earle Street, George Street, Moorfields and Prussia Street.Jim Gill, Chairman of the Commercial District BID, which represents more than 550 businesses, said: ‘’The Eberle Street scheme is a real highlight of this programme of works and I’ve no doubt it will prove to be a great attraction when it is completed.’’Bill Addy, Chief Executive of the Liverpool BID Company, added: ‘’We’ve been delighted with the improvements made so far in the Commercial District and the feedback from the business community and the public has been overwhelmingly positive. The Eberle Street scheme has required a great level of thought and design and the fact that local businesses have had a great amount of input has been hugely gratifying.’’