As fuel prices soar and roads get more congested, it makes sense for us all to consider leaving our cars at home and using alternative transport more often. But, if we are realistically going to encourage more people to choose greener modes of travel – be it walking, cycling or taking public transport – we know we have to help make them an easy, safe and convenient option.
With this in mind, the Council, in partnership with Transport for Greater Manchester, has successfully bid for £1m funding from the Department for Transport’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund and Sustrans – a leading sustainable transport charity.
The first scheme to come from this will be a new and improved two-mile canal tow path link for cyclists and pedestrians between Ashton and Hyde town centres. The user-friendly route, developed in partnership with the Canals and Rivers Trust and Sustrans, will provide access points to major employment locations.
The second initiative will see the upgrading of the off-road link between Ashton town centre and Ashton Moss employment opportunities. The route will provide easy and safe access for pedestrians and cyclists between Katherine Street and a point on Lord Sheldon Way adjacent to the Village Hotel.
Finally, there will be major improvements in lighting and pedestrian access at Hattersley Railway Station, which is a major gateway for residents commuting to and from work.
These local initiatives are part of a wider package of sustainable transport improvements to be implemented across the Greater Manchester area over the next three years. Hopefully they will help start making those first steps to relying less on our cars that bit easier.