According to an architect, a Victorian bridge in Sheffield could be turned into a wonderful green space to help attract families to the area. Matt Bowker, MD of Coda Studios, expressed interest in turning Kelham Island’s Ball Street Bridge into a park. Since the pandemic, the bridge has been blocked from traffic and has become a gathering spot for visitors to admire the river and wildlife, he said. Sheffield City Council praised the proposal.

Mr. Bowker, whose office is nearby, said Kelham Island has seen a lot of investment and expansion over the last 20 years, but it is geared at young people – singles and couples. Although there are many apartments, pubs, and restaurants, there is a little outdoor area for families. He believes that repaving the bridge and installing permanent benches and planters might transform it into a venue for events and for residents to come. Sheffield City Council spokesperson stated the city is proud of its image as the Outdoor City, and that enhancing green space is a key component of development in the city core. He went on to say that the Ball Street Bridge was now closed to traffic as part of Kelham’s active transportation strategy to encourage walking and cycling and that when putting initiatives like this in place, they have to consider things like emergency vehicle access.