Highways England is promising to resolve a ‘missing link’ on one of the National Cycle Network’s key routes by extending the A36 cycleway in Salisbury.
It is providing £630,000 for a scheme on the A36 Southampton Road between College Roundabout and Bourne Way Roundabout.
The scheme will see footpath widening, reconfiguration, new signs and lining, and high friction surfacing at entrances.
The government-owned company said this stretch of the network serves an important and well-used connection, but the current route is not continuous.
The 800-metre cycle way will reduce the need for detours, dismounting or cycling within the carriageway. It represents phase two of an ongoing scheme, with previous work introducing a route from Petersfinger Park and Ride to Bourne Way Roundabout.
The scheme is on the National Cycling Network Route 24
Highways England route manager Neil Winter said the new and improved cycleway will mean much easier and safer trips for cyclists and pedestrians.
He said: ‘At Highways England, our work goes beyond operating, maintaining and improving roads. We’re investing in the environment and communities surrounding our network, as well as the people travelling and working on it.
‘We aim to address social and environmental issues and add real value to society. We’re delighted to be partnering with Wiltshire Council to realise this project – a glowing example of how this funding can make life better for communities living and working near our roads.’
The council’s cabinet member for highways, Bridget Wayman, said: The council supports any measures that seek to encourage more people to use sustainable modes of travel and welcomes the improvements proposed by Highways England.’
Work on the cycleway began earlier this month and is expected to be completed by the end of March, with works carried out overnight under signalling and pedestrians being asked to use the southern side footway.
Highways England said cyclists, pedestrians and horse riders will see more benefits over the next five years, with £169m set aside in its new Users and Communities fund, one of four designated funds in the 2020-2025 Road Investment Strategy.
However, the fund also covers integration, roadside facilities, communities, freight, and information.
The company added that since 2015 it has invested more than £85m towards the creation of 160 new and upgraded cycle ways across England, 'providing safe, attractive and accessible facilities for people to cycle for work, shopping'.