Construction work on an important new link in the Warrington cycle network starts this month.
The Chester Road cycleway project will provide a new 1.4km cycle-friendly route linking three key bridges on the River Mersey. It will run between the new Centre Park Link bridge, the blue bridge into Centre Park, and across Knutsford Road bridge at Bridgefoot, before linking into Lower Bridge Street in the town centre.
The project is being funded using a combination of ring fenced grant from the government through the Local Growth Fund and council borrowing.
The southern part of the scheme will involve a widened path on the western side of Chester Road up to Brian Bevan Island next to the river Mersey. The new path will be tarmacked to a high standard and all street furniture including street signs, bus stops, and seats will be replaced or upgraded. In addition, a new fence will be erected along the scheme boundary in front of the existing old and damaged metal fencing.
The middle part of the scheme northwards along Wilderspool Causeway and Knutsford Road bridge will utilise the existing wide pavement on the west side and this will be enhanced and clearly signed for shared use purposes with new, improved crossing facilities provided.
The northern part of the scheme will involve the creation of more space at the signalised crossing of Wilson Patten Street at the Bridgefoot junction. This crossing was narrowed on a temporary basis in 2020 to benefit pedestrians and took advantage of the reduced traffic levels during the Covid-19 restrictions.
This crossing forms part of the package of temporary town centre measures delivered by the council using government Active Travel funds and proved popular with pedestrians and cyclists. The final improved crossing will formalise the temporary arrangement. It will also benefit from reduced volumes of traffic using Bridgefoot, thanks to the new Centre Park Link.
Warrington Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for transportation, highways and public realm, Cllr Hans Mundry, said: “I’m really pleased that we are rolling out another significant piece of cycling infrastructure to support our Local Transport Plan ambitions.
“This improved path will be available for use by cyclists and pedestrians, and is designed to meet the needs for people with disabilities. The overall aim of the project is to help people travel sustainably, healthily and safely.”
The appointment of the contractor for the Chester Road cycleway was approved at the January Cabinet meeting. George Cox & Sons, who have also worked on other active travel schemes in Warrington, will start work on site in early February with the initial focus being at the northern end.
A project webpage has been set up at warrington.gov.uk/chesterrdcycleway where regular updates on the project will be available.