New pedestrian and cycle route to encourage active, greener travel

Work is set to begin on a new route for cyclists and pedestrians near Wirral Waters.

This latest pedestrian/cycleway will provide improved facilities from the existing pedestrian and cycle paths at Bidston Moss, along the southern section of Wallasey Bridge Road and the full length of Beaufort Road in Birkenhead, improving access to the West Float area of the Wirral Waters development. 

The Greenway will be separated from the road via an attractive landscaped corridor, incorporating sustainable drainage, trees and a wildflower meadow.

The whole project is designed to create an environment that is safe for both walking and cycling and it is hoped will help to embed them as part of people’s regular commuting habits.

The scheme is the fifth phase of works funded via the Sustainable Urban Development Fund with the first four phases of works resulting in improvements for pedestrians and cyclists along the River Birket path across Bidston Moss. This grant funding cannot be used for any other purpose and must be used within a set time limit.

In order to deliver this project it has also been necessary to expand the boundary of the highway area to include additional land. Some of this land has been gifted to the council by Wirral Waters developer Peel while land at the corner of Beaufort Road with Wallasey Bridge Road has been purchased from Network Rail.

The new route will also include a ‘Tiger’ crossing which is designed for both pedestrians and cyclists. The ‘Tiger’ crossing works in a similar way to Zebra crossings, in that traffic should give way to those using the crossing, but also allows cyclists to cross without the need to dismount by following the specially marked cycle route alongside.

Wirral Council has awarded the contract for the construction of the project to local contractors Cambrianway Ltd.

Cllr Tony Jones, chair of the Economy, Regeneration and Housing Committee, said, “This is why we work hard at Wirral council to secure funding such as this to deliver important improvements. This will create safe and useful new routes to encourage people to walk and cycle more. And funding for it is money that has been given to the council specifically for this purpose and is not coming from the council’s resources which are delivering frontline services. 

Cllr Liz Grey, chair of the Environment, Climate Emergency and Transport Committee, added, “This route is part of a wider developing cycle network across the Left Bank to support sustainable and active travel options for people living and working across this area. And not only will this latest scheme help us protect the environment but it will also help people live a healthier lifestyle.”

Richard Mawdsley, Director of Development at Wirral Waters, said, “The Greenway: West Float public realm project is a key part of the development of the Mea Park neighbourhood at Wirral Waters. The creation of a strategic east-west greenway across Wirral Waters, linking the development to the surrounding areas, will help transform the area. In addition to encouraging active travel, this project is about job creation and making the area ‘investment ready’, capable of attracting priority industries for the city-region, including renewable energy, maritime, construction innovation and general manufacturing organisations.”

Wirral Council was awarded £1.22 million of Sustainable Urban Development (SUD) Funding with £611,434 being provided by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and a further £611,434 from the LCR Transforming Cities Fund (TCF).   

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