by Iain Roberts on 20 January, 2014
As we get more and more traffic on our roads, we know that the best solution we have is to get at least some people out of their cars and onto bikes, foot, buses, trains and trams. We can’t just build more roads – there’s no space (the A6 to Manchester Airport Relief Road is the first major new road built in Stockport for 30 years and it will help reduce traffic in our villages, but it isn’t a cure).
There are a lot of people who don’t currently cycle, but say they would if there were safe routes end-to-end. At the moment we have lots of partial cycle routes that still require cyclists to navigate big and busy junctions or take long detours.
So we’ve set out to start creating those end-to-end cycle routes and get more people out of cars and onto bikes. It’ll take time: they’ve done it in Denmark and the Netherlands, but they’ve also been at it for thirty years. But you’ve got to start somewhere!
One route will enable people to cycle from south of Cheadle into Manchester or Stockport without having to go through Cheadle village or navigate junctions like Roscoe’s roundabout, and another critical section of that route is now being planned.
The complete route takes people off Wilmslow Road at Warren Avenue, then crosses Gatley Road at a new Toucan crossing, goes along The Crescent, Hall Street and Brook Road, along the newly-widened path to Mill Lane and then up to the Alexandra Hospital.
This new section will widen the footpath along Manchester Road into a wide, joint footway/cycleway that takes people either into Manchester or up to the Transpennine Trail.
The section of the Transpennine Trail from Manchester Road into Stockport will be widened and tarmacced – hopefully in the next year or two – as part of Greater Manchester’s successful Cycle City bid which will also see cycle paths from Cheadle right into the centre of Manchester.