Work begins on new £8m Active Travel project in Glasgow
Work has commenced on a new £8 million pound walking and cycling project in Glasgow. The ambitious initiative will be made up of strategic protected cycle routes through Charing Cross and along Garscube Road, Woodlands Road, and St George's Road.
It is considered to be the missing piece of the jigsaw which will connect to the improvements on Sauchiehall Street, the Forth and Clyde Canal, and regeneration work at Port Dundas and Sighthill. Public spaces, walking routes, new pedestrian crossings, and electric car and bike hire stations will also complement the project.
Connecting Woodside has been funded by the Scottish Government and Glasgow City Council and delivered through the Sustrans Scotland Places for Everyone programme.
Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson joined partners to see the commencement of works. Mr Matheson said:
"It’s fantastic to see progress on this ambitious active travel project in the Woodside area of Glasgow. It’s going to benefit all those who live or travel through St George’s Cross, Charing Cross and Cowcaddens – and will connect Woodside to other high quality protected cycle routes like the Sauchiehall Street Avenues project.
"I’m pleased that we’ve been able to support this Sustrans Places for Everyone project alongside Glasgow City Council. When complete, it will directly support our commitment to make Scotland an inclusive Active Nation and to increase the number of people walking, cycling and wheeling.
"For our wellbeing, health and climate – people require more opportunities to walk, cycle and wheel for shorter everyday journeys. As we respond to the climate emergency, this focus has never been greater and our funding is now at record levels. The draft budget proposes over £85 million for active travel, much of which will be match funded, and that is before an additional £15 million in ring-fenced local authority funding which brings the amount to over £100 million pounds.
"With continued leadership from local authorities like we see from Glasgow, matched by expertise from Sustrans and other partners, we will continue to rebalance our streets and communities in favour of more sustainable walking and cycling opportunities."
Councillor Anna Richardson, City Convener for Sustainability and Carbon Reduction at Glasgow City Council said:
"I’m so pleased to see boots on the ground and work underway on Connecting Woodside. We have been working very closely with the community over the past two years on plans for a project that is for the benefit of the community. The start of work on the first of many protected cycle routes in the area is a big and welcome step forward.
"Connecting Woodside will ultimately transform walking and cycling across an entire neighbourhood, making local journeys for work and leisure easier and more attractive. It will also see the city centre become far more accessible by foot and bike to a substantial and diverse community that otherwise has to navigate some of the city’s busiest roads to get there.
"The climate emergency has renewed our focus on efforts to promote a greater uptake of sustainable transport in Glasgow. Having more people walking and cycling will help ensure Glasgow can achieve its ambitions of becoming carbon neutral by 2030."
Lindley Kirkpatrick, Sustrans Scotland Programme Director for Active Cities and Towns said: "Glasgow City Council has taken some of the best walking and cycling design from across Europe and worked with local communities and schools to create something unique for Connecting Woodside. The new segregated route on Garscube Road will make it easier for people across the north-west of Glasgow to walk, cycle or wheel as part of their everyday journeys. It will also make the neighbourhood a more attractive place to live in, work in and enjoy thanks to new on-street cycle storage spaces and new places for people to rest and relax.
"Sustrans welcomes the increased Scottish Government funding for active travel for 2020/21 and the ambitious plans of Glasgow City Council and other local authorities across Scotland to deliver new walking and cycling projects."