Green light for £5.5m Active Travel schemes in city centre and Wythenshawe

Manchester City Council’s £5.5m bid to create new permanent cycling and walking routes in Manchester city centre and Wythenshawe has been approved.

The money is part of the second tranche of the government’s Active Travel Fund, which has been granted to Greater Manchester by the Department for Transport. It will be used to fund the development and construction of a new city centre ‘Triangle’, plus a 5.4-mile route to improve connectivity for people cycling and walking in the Wythenshawe area.

With funding confirmed, Manchester City Council has the green light to develop plans for both schemes to be brought forward for public consultation.

The £4m city centre “Triangle’ vision will see improved cycling and walking links created between the city centre’s three major train stations – Deansgate, Piccadilly and Victoria – plus bus hubs at Piccadilly, Shudehill and the coach station. It will reallocate road space to pedestrians and cyclists and create active travel links between key transport hubs, incorporating other pedestrian and cycling schemes within the city to create a more pleasant space for pedestrians and people on bikes. The scheme’s final design and route are to be determined subject to public consultation.

The £1.5m Wythenshawe scheme will be developed by Manchester City Council, in partnership with Trafford Borough Council, to improve cycling links between Wythenshawe town centre, Wythenshawe Hospital and the city centre. Subject to consultation, the scheme aims to improve and provide new dedicated cycle infrastructure from Simonsway via Wythenshawe Hospital to the Bridgewater Canal, to give a continuous route suitable for all levels of cycling experience. The scheme will involve the construction of new cycle routes and parallel crossings, while existing off-highway cycleways will be widened and resurfaced, with new lighting provided. The final route will be subject to consultation.

Executive Member for the Environment, Planning and Transport, Councillor Angeliki Stogia, said: “We welcome this announcement of fresh funding, which comes as a major boost to our existing plans to strengthen Manchester’s network of permanent cycling and walking infrastructure.

“We will now be able to quickly move forward with developing plans for a cycling and walking ‘Triangle’ of connected routes in the city centre, while also improving active travel links to Wythenshawe Hospital and Manchester Airport.

“We’re committed to bringing forward schemes which provide new high-quality cycling and walking routes to support the long-term, sustainable shift towards active travel and away from the car. This is vital if the city is to be successful in meeting the ambitious goal of becoming zero-carbon by 2038 at the latest.”