A consultation has launched this week on a scheme to create a new, safe and enjoyable walking and cycling route through neighbourhoods to the north and east of the city centre.
Manchester City Council has designed the new continuous route to serve as an active travel link between Ancoats, New Islington, New Cross, New Town, Redbank, the Green Quarter and the city centre.
The proposals – subject to the consultation, which is open until Wednesday 17 March – will create new crossings to overcome local barriers for people travelling on foot and by bike, such as the River Irk, Ashton Canal and railway viaducts. Junctions and public spaces which are not currently easy to walk or cycle through will be enhanced, with more trees and green space included in the plans.
The scheme, which is being proposed after changes were made to the design following a previous round of consultation, runs from Roger Street in the Green Quarter, passing Islington Marina and through the Ancoats conservation area, to Pollard Street’s junction with Great Ancoats Street, which is part of the Manchester and Salford Inner Relief Route.
In the original consultation in May 2020, respondents overwhelmingly agreed that they wanted the council to create routes away from cars and roads,develop a route that links key places in all these areas, such as Cutting Room Square in Ancoats, the New Islington tram stop, plus connects to quiet routes to Piccadilly and the Northern Quarter and make improvements to key junctions to help make them easier to cross
The project has been designed in accordance with current accessibility guidance and is intended to enable people of all ages and abilities to travel safely on foot and by bike between the north and east of the city, away from the busy inner relief route, while still being able to link into existing routes and emerging Bee Network routes.
Two new CYCLOPS (cycle optimised protected signals) junctions are proposed for the junction of Oldham Road with Thompson Street and Sherratt Street and the junction of Rochdale Road with Ludgate Hill and Gould Street. This trailblazing junction design has already been successfully implemented at Royce Road, Hulme, as part of the Manchester to Chorlton walking and cycling route.
Manchester City Council’s Executive Member for the Environment, Planning and Transport, Councillor Angeliki Stogia, said: “This scheme will help create better places to live to the north and east of the city centre, making walking and cycling easier and more attractive options by improving travel links between emerging neighbourhoods and the city centre.
“Our proposals, which follow on from the benefit of an initial round of consultation, seek to create more walking and cycling-friendly public areas which are joined-up more naturally, with better signage and safer junctions, to encourage people of all ages to see travelling on foot or by bike as natural choices.
“Now it’s time to look at our new proposals and give us your feedback, so that we can create a scheme which is informed by those views and provides lasting environmental benefits for our city.”