Good progress is being made on Warrington Borough Council’s Local Transport plan with several key milestones being met in the first year of its implementation, according to the council’s Cabinet Member for transportation, highways and public realm, Cllr Hans Mundry.
The council has a vision to transform how people travel around Warrington, promote active travel and make the town less car-dominated.
Adopted in December 2019, LTP4 sets out the ambition to make Warrington ‘a thriving, attractive, accessible and well-connected place with popular, high quality walking, cycling and public transport networks supporting a carbon-neutral future.’
A number of key achievements and milestones have been made during the first year of LTP4, which are set out in the Annual Progress Report. These include:
•Responding to the unprecedented challenges of Covid-19, by ensuring key workers can get to work, putting measures in place to create a safer environment for the increased numbers of pedestrians and cyclists, and working with local bus operators to maintain suitable levels of service.
•Building on the opportunities of a huge drop in vehicles using the highway network and increases in walking and cycling, through initiatives that support and encourage sustainable transport, such as the distribution of an updated cycle map to residents across the borough.
•Securing Active Travel Funding from the Government, which has been used to deliver a range of improvements in the town centre, including widening key footways, increasing cycleways, making roads more pedestrian and cycle focused and making cycling into the town centre more accessible.
•Delivering key projects, including the opening of the new Warrington West train station, completion of major works to reduce congestion and improve traffic flow in east Warrington, and the delivery of a range of highway, cycleway and footway improvements in the Omega employment area in west Warrington. Meanwhile, Centre Park Link opens shortly and good progress is being made on delivering the full business case for Western Link.
•Planning for the future by commissioning studies into a number of key areas, including electric vehicles, local walking and cycling infrastructure, bus priority and mass transit and Northern Powerhouse Rail.
Cllr Mundry, said: “The period since the launch of LTP4 has been an extraordinary one, with the Covid-19 pandemic having an unprecedented effect on transport. Having a clear strategy in place has enabled us to respond to the challenges and opportunities that the change in travel patterns has presented,” he told Warrington Worldwide.
“This progress report outlines the great work that we are doing to deliver important, new transport schemes, while managing, maintaining, and improving safety on our highway network and encouraging people to travel in more sustainable ways.”