Charles Cross

Charles Cross Roundabout, with Charles Church at its centre, is a familiar landmark for many people and a key gateway to the city centre. It is also an important strategic transport route forming part of the City Centre Masterplan and the Plymouth and South West Devon Joint Local Plan, supporting growth and investment in the city centre, as well as reinforcing the city as a regional centre for shopping, employment, education and leisure.

As a busy part of the highway network, around 40,000 trips travel through Charles Cross Roundabout every day and the majority of the city’s bus services pass through the roundabout on their regular routes.  The Charles Cross Improvements Scheme aims to improve traffic flow for all vehicles, including bus priority measures, and provide improvements for pedestrians and cyclists.

Changes to the roundabout under consideration could include an additional lane for traffic heading southbound on to the roundabout at Charles Street, upgrades for traffic and pedestrians on Exeter Street, and changes to the road layout on Charles Street northbound, between the roundabout and the Drake Circus car park to improve the flow for both cars and buses.

A new pedestrian crossing is also proposed just north of the car park entrance to replace the existing crossing arrangements and provide a more direct link for pedestrians to the new History Centre when it opens in 2020.

Proposals for the Hampton Street and the Ebrington Street junctions include plans for the ageing subway to be filled in and replaced with improved surface crossing facilities and a better environment for pedestrians and cyclists.

Charles Church will remain unaffected, respected as a monument to those who lost their lives during the Second World War.

Coordinating with the re-development of Bretonside and the new History Centre (both due to open in 2020), the Charles Cross Improvement Scheme aims to provide a better gateway to the city and a better journey for users.


The cost of the scheme is around £4.7 million, with a £2.1 million contribution being sought from the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership.

When the works will begin

Construction is expected to start in 2018 and take approximately 12 months.

Consultation on proposals

Public consultation was conducted on the proposals from 31 August to 2 October 2017 and any comments or ideas that were received are now being fed into the process. A report on the consultation's findings can be downloaded here.

 Consultation Report [PDF, 982KB]

Scheme plans and proposals

 Scheme leaflet [PDF, 3.53MB]

What happens next?

Feedback received through the consultation will help inform the options taken forward.