NOTE: This content is old - Published: Thursday, May 16th, 2019.
Plans have been unveiled for a new cycle route linking two key communities in Flintshire.
Flintshire Council has published proposals for a cycle network running between Mold and Broughton.
It would also connect with Buckley, Penyffordd, Saltney and Sandycroft, along with railway stations and major centres of employment.
The scheme forms part of the Welsh Government’s Active Travel Plan, which is aimed at increasing the number of people who walk and cycle.
It follows on from the creation of a cycle network on Deeside Industrial Park, which currently attracts more than 11,000 cyclists during peak months.
One of the local authority’s senior officers said it had been working on a number of possible routes, which have been included with the plans.
In a report, Steve Jones, chief officer for streetscene and transportation, said: “Cycling is becoming an increasingly important element of transportation strategies in achieving sustainable development and can offer many well documented benefits including health, environmental and economic benefits whilst being a suitable form of transport for many local journeys.
“The objectives for introducing a cycling route between Mold and Broughton can be set in the context of the wider sustainable transportation goals, including reducing the growth of car use and promoting alternative modes of transport.
“Through the provision of Welsh Government Active Travel funding obtained within 2018/19 financial year, Flintshire County Council commissioned consultants ‘Local Transport Projects’ to undertake route appraisal and design for a strategic cycling route from Mold to Broughton.
“Streetscene and transportation view this proposal as an exciting opportunity to deliver a pioneering package of measures thus acting as a catalyst to promote modal shift to alternative sustainable modes of transport.”
A previous study was undertaken in 2007, which investigated the possibility of creating a new route linking Mold and Saltney.
The aim was to use a disused railway line and remove any barriers preventing people from walking and cycling along it.
However, it was later abandoned due to land ownership issues.
Mr Jones said the authority would be looking to avoid similar problems this time round.
He added: “Due to the constraints identified within previous commissions, this study is therefore seeking to incorporate off road facilities, utilisation of highway verges, road realignment, point closures and other traffic management solutions in accordance with Welsh Government’s Active Travel Design Guidance, thus reducing both the effect and reliance upon landowners.
“The proposal also offers the opportunity for new social enterprises or business growth with cafes, bike hire etc.
“This has been demonstrated already as a result of the Burton Marsh cycle path implementation, where businesses such as cafes have set up as a result of increased cyclists in the area.”
The scheme is dependent on a successful funding bid being made to the Welsh Government.
Members of the council’s environment scrutiny committee will be asked to support the proposals at a meeting next week.
By Liam Randall – Local Democracy Reporter (more here).
[File Image: Two cyclists in Queensferry]