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COVID-19 UPDATE: City Centre - Road Closures & Restrictions


Click below to listen to the audio file, or watch the subtitled British Sign Language videos below.


Is the city centre open for visitors again?

Cardiff is currently in local lockdown. Local lockdown means that we can’t welcome any visitors to Cardiff for a little while, this makes us sad but we know it’s for the best. Visitors who are already here should please try to make their way home as soon as they are reasonably able to do so, unless they have an acceptable reason for staying according to Welsh Government legislation.

Cardiff locals are also unable to leave the area for the time being, unless there is a valid reason to do so. On the brighter side, residents are still free to enjoy the city in a safe and responsible manner and we think you should.

What social distancing measures are in place to make sure people can keep a safe distance from each other?

The arrows and lines on the floor mark out the direction of travel, with queuing systems in place for people to access the shops. Where possible, the queuing system will be inside the shop, rather than out on the street. We ask everyone visiting the city centre to be patient and stay safe while the new system beds in.

Who will be managing the queuing into shops and what happens if people ignore the directional walking system?

There will be a number of marshals working in the city centre to help visitors get used to the new system and assist shopkeepers and their staff. Ambassadors from FOR Cardiff will also be available to assist where necessary. We ask everyone to follow the system for their own safety and for the safety of others. Street marshalls and ambassadors will be in the city centre to encourage people to follow the guidelines. If anyone is concerned that guidelines are being breached we ask them to contact them for help.

Will I have to walk around the whole of the city centre to get to a specific shop?

No. There will be areas on main junctions on key streets which have been designed to allow visitors to turn around. Just remember to do your best to keep to the left on your journey in the designated walking area.

How long will the social distancing measures in the city centre last?

These measures are not permanent and have been put in place to open up the city centre safely, while restrictions are still in place due to COVID-19.

Once I’m in the city centre, where can I find more help and information?

Three welcome points have been put in place to give guidance and information to visitors when they arrive in the city centre. Castle Street and Mill Lane will be closed to traffic, with new restrictions on Westgate Street and Lower St Mary Street. Only pedestrians, cyclists, buses, and those that need access to the street by car, either because they live there, they need to get to their business or to access a car park will be allowed entry. Staff will be on hand to answer any questions that the public may have.

Will free hand sanitizer be available for people to use?

Yes, there will be a number of hand sanitiser points at the welcome stations for the public to use for free. Everyone coming into Cardiff will be encouraged to use the facilities available.

BSL - Getting Around
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Click to watch the British Sign Language video for getting around Cardiff city centre.


Which Cardiff Harbour Authority facilities are open?
  • Cardiff Bay Barrage car park (normal charges apply)
  • Cardiff Bay Barrage outer arm (for fishing and walking)
  • Cardiff Bay Barrage public toilets
  • Cardiff Bay Barrage skate park
  • Cardiff Bay Barrage AdiZone Gym
  • Havannah Street car park (normal charges apply)
  • Roald Dahl Plass
  • Cardiff Bay Wetland Reserve
  • Cardiff Rowing Centre (Channel View Leisure Centre) slipway – please visit here.
Which Cardiff Harbour Authority facilities remain closed?
  • Cardiff Bay Barrage children’s play area
  • Cardiff International White Water
  • Cardiff Sailing Centre
  • Flat Holm island
Do I have to observe social distancing?

Yes, please keep 2 metres away from people outside of your household.

What other safety advice should I follow?

It is recommended that you use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser regularly while out and about, especially after sitting on benches or making contact with other surfaces.

Welsh Government advice is to stay local, therefore you should avoid travelling long distances to visit Cardiff Bay.

It is your responsibility to adopt Welsh Government Covid-19 principles, wherever possible. For the latest advice, visit here.

Why are the public toilets closed?

Cardiff Council policy at present is that no facilities of this type can be opened due to the significant risk of transfer of the Covid-19 virus from user to user. The Council is reviewing and looking at measures that can be put in place to ensure public safety.

Are Cardiff Bay Barrage and Roald Dahl Plass likely to be busy?

We are currently experiencing high footfall in these areas, particularly as the weather is warm. We want everyone to be able to enjoy these areas safely – please be considerate of others, stay in your designated pedestrian or cycling lane (where applicable), watch your speed, and try to keep 2 metres away from others.

How do I dispose of any rubbish?

Please place your litter in the bins provided, or if they are full, take it home with you.

Which venues are open at Mermaid Quay and The Red Dragon Centre?

For the latest information about Mermaid Quay and The Red Dragon Centre, please visit their websites.

What about other venues in the Bay – when are they reopening?

For the latest information, please check their respective websites.

BSL - Cardiff Bay
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Click to watch the British Sign Language video for Cardiff Bay.


When will the hospitality sector open again, with restaurants and pubs opening in the city centre?

The dates for the re-opening the hospitality sector hasn’t yet been confirmed by Welsh Government. The Council, along with our partners, is keen to establish these outdoor areas so we are able to assist the trade, ready for when the announcement is given.

What are the plans for Castle Street and the food and drink offer?

Castle Street is being closed to all motorists, so that it can be transformed into a new covered, outdoor public space and eating area. Building and preparation work will begin on this now so it is ready when restrictions on the hospitality sector lift. It will enable restaurants and cafes to operate which would otherwise have been unable to because of social distancing restrictions in their premises. All details relating to this scheme are being discussed with businesses at the moment and further information will be released when it is available.

BSL - Food & Drink
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Click to watch the British Sign Language video for Food & Drink.


How will motorists be able to move from east to west if Castle Street is closed?

To ensure that arrangements can start to be put in place, the Castle Street has to be closed. The closure was put in place at 12 Noon on Sunday June 21st until further notice. Motorists are advised that the city centre should not be used as a through route. Instead they are asked to use the main arterial routes, via Western Avenue or the A4232 to move from East to West. Residents living in the inner city areas of Canton, Cathays, Grangetown and Riverside are able to use Penarth Road.

Why have you made Westgate Street and Lower St Mary Street for access and for buses only?

Restrictions have to be put in place to ensure the new pedestrian walking route can work effectively. Car parks on Westgate Street will be open for the public to use. These restrictions will ensure that these roads are not used as a through route by motorists, which will help the bus companies run a timely service.

BSL - Road Closures
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Click to watch the British Sign Language video for Food & Drink.


Will there be extra parking for visitors?

All the city centre car parks will be open for the public to use. Due to social-distancing requirements, the capacity at these car parks will be reduced, but motorists will be signposted to car parks which do have parking spaces when they arrive in the city centre.

Will parking be free?

No, parking will have to be paid for. All fees for private car parks and on-street parking will return to normal and parking enforcement will be in place.


How will taxis be able to work in the city centre with the road closures in place?

The taxis will be able to drive on the roads which are for access or buses only if they have a fare and are dropping someone off on that street. Taxis will not be able to use these restricted roads as a through route and will not be able to access or drive along Caste Street or Mill Lane.

Will there be any additional taxi ranks?

Yes, as Mill Lane will be closed to all traffic, new taxi ranks are provided on either side of the closure point on Castle Street, by the Angel Hotel as well as a new rank at the bottom of Kingsway. The Council has been working with representatives from the taxi trade throughout this process.


With the roads closures in place, where can I catch a bus in the city centre?

Both Westgate Street and Lower St Mary Street will be for access only and buses to use. This will ensure that the buses can move around the city centre more easily, as the traffic flow will be reduced.

All buses that used to stop on Castle Street have been re-routed and all customers are strongly advised to visit the bus company’s website for further information.

For information on Cardiff Bus, please click here.
For more information on NAT services, please click here.
For more information on Stagecoach services, please click here.
For more information on National Express Services, please click here.


With the restrictions on public transport due to social distancing, what alternative transport provision are you providing?

A new pop up cycleway has been put in place from Cathedral Road/Cowbridge Road junction, over Canton Bridge, along Castle Street, Duke Street and up to the North Road-Boulevard De Nantes junction.

The restrictions on Westgate Street and Lower St Mary Street have been put in place, not only to accommodate the new way of walking around the city centre but to assist the bus companies to deliver a timely service.

Additional infrastructure has also been put in place, such as new cycle parking and new taxi ranks for the taxi trade.

Will there be additional provision for cyclists?

A new pop up cycleway has been put in place to allow cyclists to travel from the castle to the end of Queen Street. Additional secure cycle parking is also being explored to encourage travel by bike.

The Council is also exploring other possibilities where pop up cycleways could be put in place safely to encourage people to cycle.

BSL - Travel & Transport
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Click to watch the British Sign Language video for Travel & Transport.


How will people with mobility problems access the city centre with the restrictions that have been put in place?

An Equality Impact Assessment is being produced and we will be working with our established focus group to work through these details. The new arrangements will improve pedestrian movement around the city centre, with motorists unable to use the city centre as a through route.

In the first instance, help and advice for people with disabilities including a motorised, buggy, pick-up service will be available. People will be able to go to any marshal or welcome point to call the buggy. They will also be able to approach street ambassadors for help or advice. Alternatively if they want to book a pick-up from the buggy from a designated parking bay in advance they can call 02920 873888 from Monday, June 22.

Have provisions been made for those who have sight problems, or the blind?

Again, this will all be addressed in the Equality Impact Assessment and we will work through the detail with our focus group. We are aware that social distancing is difficult for the partially sighted, so a series of measures will be assessed to try to help as much as possible.

Will disabled parking be available within the restricted zones?

Yes, disabled parking will be available in the restricted zone. Disabled parking is available as normal on Churchill Way and Wharton Street. The council hasn’t removed any disabled parking as part of these new arrangements.

BSL - Accessibility
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Click to watch the British Sign Language video for accessibility.


How can the council install all of the city centre changes without planning permission?

As stated above, these are not permanent arrangements, so this work doesn’t require planning permission. The road closures have been put in place by legal order and we are working with our colleagues in licensing on interim arrangements that can be put in place to help trade in the new outdoor areas. Everything we are doing is designed to keep the public safe and to enable businesses to open up and recover from the effects of the pandemic and the restrictions it has placed on us all, safeguarding, as much as we can, thousands of jobs at the same time.

I am a resident living in the city centre, what consultation has taken place with residents on this scheme?

A letter giving information on the road closures and restrictions is being delivered to city centre businesses and residents with a contact email address for further information. Our aim is to help the city recover from the pandemic, to ensure the safety of residents, visitors and workers, and to do everything we can to safeguard jobs and businesses in Cardiff. Recovery arrangements are being worked on at pace as guidance changes. We thank residents for their patience and understanding while the city is adapted to help businesses re-open.

Will businesses be consulted before any further plans are brought into the city centre?

The Council has been working closely with FOR Cardiff and representatives from the business community as these changes are made. This engagement will continue to ensure that the measures that are in place are fit for purpose and assist businesses to trade safely in these difficult times.

What has been put in place to ensure that goods and services can be delivered to shops?

Deliveries can be made to shops in the city centre between midnight and 10am, so this has not changed. All businesses are advised to make deliveries during these hours, as deliveries will not be permitted outside these hours.

How do I receive updates on the latest developments as they progress?

Information will be updated here on the Visit Cardiff website as the scheme is developed.

BSL - Planning & Business
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Click to watch the British Sign Language video for planning and business.


If you have a question that has not been answered by these FAQs then please fill in the form below and we will do our best to get an answer to you as soon as possible.

Please note that our working hours are Mon – Fri from 09:00 – 17:00



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