Labour Councillors have welcomed the news that funding to develop the next stage of the Upper Don Cycle Trail Project has been given the go ahead.
Existing cycling through the Upper Don Valley from the city centre to Stocksbridge and beyond (a major transport, housing and employment corridor) is unattractive, disconnected and seen as unsafe by many users.
This new project will provide an attractive off-road cycle and walking- link from Herries Road to Hillfoot Bridge, and is proposed to be delivered in two phases.
Phase 1 plans to provide an off-road cycle and walking link from Herries Road to Wardsend Cemetery – creating a link from Southey / Owlerton to Hillsborough College, Penistone Road
Phase 2 plans to provide off-road cycle and walking link from Wardsend Cemetery to Hillfoot Bridge, connecting Kelham-Neepsend, Pitsmoor, the City Centre, Hillsborough College, Penistone Road
Currently the scheme is at the feasibility stage meaning Landscape and Engineering Design and an Ecological Study will be undertaken in order to deliver designs, Planning Application Drawings, and cost estimates to support the outline business case
The scheme will be the completion of a first phase in the largest missing link in the long-distance National Cycle Route 267 and Upper Don Trail. It will provide increased opportunities for active travel, provide improved access to green and open spaces for leisure as well as sport and exercise.
The feasibility stage of the project is due to be completed in next month.
Councillor Bob Johnson, Cabinet Member for Transport and Development, and Councillor for Hillsborough, said:
“This is a fantastic project and just the kind of thing we need to be doing to promote cycling and opening up some of our cities fantastic assets so people can make the most of them.
“As a local councillor in Hillsborough I know the potential that there is for this scheme to open fantastic cycling and walking opportunities in our area, which will also run past the Wardsend Cemetry Heritage Park.
“Credit must go to the Friends of Wardsend Cemetry Group, who have played a crucial role in advocating for this scheme. Their vision for their area and determination to get the project moving have been fantastic.”
Councillor Julie Grocutt, Labour Councillor for Stocksbridge, said:
“The Upper Don Trail is a really important project for Stocksbridge to provide an opportunity for a cycle route into central Sheffield. We have fantastic green space and countryside in the area and with a project like this it will open up even further for people to use.
“We’ve seen a big appetite for cycling in Stocksbridge, and many people are cycling in the area over the summer, as well as the Tour de Yorkshire coming in recent years. I’m really pleased that this scheme is progressing and am keen to make sure we can keep it moving forward.”