The Sustainable Transport Manager Julian for City of York Council, Julian Ridge, gives us an update on the latest cycle news from the council.
Well, the summer continues and, at CYC, we continue to work on delivering the various active mode schemes in York.
First of all, two new project managers have started here in June, and they will deliver the Active Travel Fund schemes. Shoaib Mahmood, whose background is in active mode design on highways, joins us from consultant Jacobs. Shoaib will be taking forward the Active Travel Fund schemes on Bootham, Shipton Road and Acomb Road, as well as working with Greg Morgan (introduced last month) on smaller schemes such as Navigation Road.
Hannah Chivers has joined us after stints at Southampton City Council, Sustrans and Cycling UK. Hannah will be working primarily on the Active Travel Fund schemes which are not straight highways schemes – particularly the cycle path between Heslington and Wheldrake, the Carr Lane schools people streets scheme and the scheme in the city centre to improve walk routes between the car parks and pedestrianised area in the heart of the city.
Of course, the Active Travel Fund is only part of our active mode programme at the moment, and we are also working on a scheme to improve cycle routes and pedestrian crossings on Tadcaster Road – forming part of a Transforming Cities Fund project. We will be consulting on this scheme in August – please keep a look out for the material and feed in. We would particularly like to hear from you if you are a regular user of Tadcaster Road, either on foot or by bike.
Thankyou also to those of you who have taken part in the workshops on city centre access – either for mobility impaired people or looking at access for cyclists. Martin Higgitt Associates, the consultants undertaking the study on our behalf, are considering what was said and will be reporting back to us in about a month.
We have also been notified by DfT about the next round of Active Travel Funding, the submission deadline for which is August 9th. Whilst we don’t know how funds will be allocated in this round of funding, last year CYC had an allocation of approximately £850,000. If you have any views on priorities for the city on this occasion, please let us know and we will consider in our bid preparation. Any submissions will also be considered in the formulation of our Local Walking and Cycling Infrastructure Plan – which will form part of our Local Transport Plan (and thanks to those of you who responded to the first consultation about the LTP, which was going on through June).
Greg Morgan, our new Active Modes Planner, is also getting his feet under the table at CYC and is, amongst other things, organising a programme to cut back vegetation which is getting in the way on the off-road network – parts of route 65 have been done this week.
Sustainable transport also is not just about active modes. This month CYC has submitted a bid to the Department for Transport to convert around one-third of our bus network to electric buses, and we have also notified formation of an Enhanced Bus Partnership for York. On another note, some of you will know or have worked with Christine Packer, who has led our work with schools for 13 years. Christine retired from CYC last week – leaving a legacy of some of the highest uses of active modes for the trip to school in the country. We will be recruiting for a new member of staff over the Summer and I’ll pass on the vacancy details in case it is of interest to YCC members once the ad is up.