Wiltshire Council has received confirmation of £227,000 funding from the Department for Transport (DfT) to progress the first five road reallocation schemes in the county.
The five schemes, in Salisbury, Bradford on Avon, Purton, Trowbridge, and Chippenham, are based on existing bus routes and will link the city and town centres with homes and places of work on the edges of the city and towns.
They will make it easier and safer for pedestrians and cyclists to access shops, businesses and places of work without driving or using public transport, and also help people to maintain social distancing.
Cllr Bridget Wayman, Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, said: “It’s great news that we’ve received this funding. Work will start within the next four weeks and will be completed within eight weeks.
“We’ve had many suggestions for other schemes from town and parish councils, members of the public and local groups, and we know that these five schemes don’t go far enough, but we’re working with DfT to bid for an extra £908,000 of funding that we hope to use to progress several more cycling and walking routes in Wiltshire.
“Our teams are working round the clock to survey and plan all the suggestions we’ve received, so we’ll be in a good position to take several of these forward if and when we receive the next round of funding.
“We’re also working on some other major projects that will bring cycling and walking benefits and we’ll have more news on these soon.
“We’re looking forward to these schemes being installed so cyclists and walkers in these five areas can get to shops and to work safely, and also enjoy the physical and mental health and environmental benefits.”
Full details of the five projects are as follows:
1. Salisbury cycleways to link Harnham to the city centre, allowing cyclists easy access to the city. The scheme will see one southbound lane on Brown Street turned into a cycleway and the removal of on-street parking on Exeter Street to create a cycleway on the street while maintaining two-way traffic.
2. A segregated cycleway and footway on the B3108 between Winsley and Bradford on Avon, allowing easy access between the two, and giving cyclists the option of a traffic-free ride from Winsley, into Bradford on Avon and then on to Bath along the Kennet and Avon Canal.
3. On the A420 in Chippenham, a segregated cycleway linking Bumpers Farm to the town centre, giving cyclists easy access to the centre of the town.
4. The removal of through traffic on Hook Street in Purton, which runs parallel with the A3102 between Royal Wootton Bassett and Swindon. Created in partnership with Swindon Borough Council, this will install a 3.5km route for cyclists and walkers, linking Purton with Swindon’s Lydiard Park.
5. A segregated cycleway on the A361 Hilperton Road in Trowbridge, from near the fire station into advisory cycle lanes from Stancomb Avenue to Hilperton Road roundabout, of more than 1km in total.
Work is due to start in the next four weeks on these schemes, and the council will have more to announce on the next round of funding, and other major cycling and walking projects, soon.