Tuesday, June 25

Tameside’s on route for Bee Network cycling and walking investment

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Tameside is set to benefit from the latest round of funding delivering safer and healthier transport links.

A proposal from Tameside Council for £2.5million of improvements to walking and cycling routes in Denton is to be considered by Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) on Friday (29).

It’s part of a wider package of regional investment in the “Bee Network” with 18 schemes worth a total of £137million being considered, representing the single biggest investment in cycling and walking ever announced in the city-region.

Funded by the Mayor’s Challenge Fund, the Denton project involves improving the Crown Point junction to enable more people to travel on foot or by bike, providing a real alternative to the car. It includes a 0.6 mile segregated cycle lane, a 300 metre hybrid lane, one signalised junction upgrade, two parallel crossings, bus stop bypasses and cycle parking.

Consultation will be held with residents and businesses in the area.

The aim is to provide a protective space for cyclists and wider pedestrian walkways, while improving the environment of the area, with tree planting and seating to transform the location from a congested traffic junction to an attractive route for all users, residents and business in the heart of Denton.

Benefits include increasing the number of walkers and cyclists, healthier lives from increased physical activity, reducing the number of accidents recorded on the route and better compliance with speed limits through narrowing traffic lanes.

Cllr Allison Gwynne, Tameside Council’s Executive Member for Neighbourhoods, said: “I’m delighted that our plans to improve the experience of people travelling on foot or by bike around the Crown Point junction in Denton are set to be approved. They will create a safer, healthier and more attractive environment for all users and help provide a real alternative to the car. These are draft proposals and will be subject to local engagement.

“And there will be further waves of funding where we will be seeking further investment and improvements in the cycling and walking network across Tameside.”

The project forms the first stage of the A57 Bee Network Corridor through Tameside between Manchester and Derbyshire. The overall proposal for the corridor is to provide a high quality, largely segregated cycle route and attractive footways, linking major town centres with the regional centre and Derbyshire.

Tameside Council has already been successful in securing additional funding, including £1.95million from Highways England to provide a safe cycle route parallel to the M67 between Hyde and Hollingworth. Comprehensive cycle improvements are also planned between Hattersley and the Derbyshire boundary as part of the Mottram Bypass and Glossop Spur road scheme.

If the 18 schemes are approved by GMCA it will take the number endorsed so far in Greater Manchester to 42 and will deliver 319 new and upgraded crossings and junctions as well as 70 miles of new cycling and walking routes.

Funding to cover initial costs for a GM-wide bike hire scheme will also be considered.

Greater Manchester’s Cycling and Walking Commissioner, Chris Boardman, said: “The 42 schemes that are now on the books are truly transformational. We’ve got a real bang for our buck here in terms of the positive knock-on benefits that will be made possible by this investment.”

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