Cabinet members will be updated next week on plans to invest £13m of grant funding on improving Barnsley’s active travel routes which will encourage more people to walk and cycle around our borough.
It was announced last year that £166m was being invested across the Sheffield City Region though the Transforming Cities Fund announced by government, with £43m earmarked for Barnsley and of that, £13m for active travel schemes.
A range of schemes is being designed and business cases submitted so that the funding can be accessed. Cabinet will be asked at their meeting on Wednesday 14 July to give their approval to accept the next instalment of grant funding which will enable our transport engineers to begin detailed design work, submit all relevant planning applications, and to go out to tender for the works.
The schemes include better links along the A61 to the town centre, as well as between Stairfoot and Goldthorpe. There will also be an improved active travel hub for the town centre, Darton and Goldthorpe, and improved access to railway stations to encourage people to use a mixture of active travel and public transport.
In addition to the TCF schemes, a further £1m grant funding was secured late last year from the Active Travel Fund. Through this, projects to improve walking and cycling access in Goldthorpe, and improved links between Elsecar and Cortonwood, are being prepared.
An online survey of Barnsley residents was carried out last year to find out people’s views on active travel routes across the borough, and 63% of those taking part said more extensive and direct active travel routes would be ‘useful or very useful' to get them walking and cycling more.
Further public consultation will be carried out looking at the detailed design of the schemes as they progress further into the design process.
Cllr Chris Lamb, Cabinet Spokesperson for Environment and Transport, said: “We have fantastic places for people to cycle for leisure in our borough, such as the Trans Pennine Trail, yet we recognise there is more to do to connect our communities across the borough with the town centre and with each other.
“Giving people more ways to cycle and walk whether as part of their commute to work or in their leisure time takes more cars off the road reducing congestion and improving air quality, while also improving the health of our residents.
“I’m really pleased that we’re able to progress projects to the next phase and hopefully see work begin early next year.”