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‘Salford is a growing city, why aren’t we building more cycle lanes?’

Salford has grown exponentially in the last few years - should they be building more cycle lanes?
Cycle Lanes Salford

Campaigners have taken aim at Salford council over a lack of new cycle lanes in the city.

Harry Gray, Walk Ride Greater Manchester’s lead for Salford and a resident in the borough, said the town hall appears to have lost its drive to expand the cycle network.

Cycling in Salford

It’s an issue which he believes should receive more investment and thought from council officers, as Salford’s growing population has led to more flats and houses being built around the city.

The council recently announced an upgrade to Salford’s cycling network, with the £5-million Oldfield Road Corridor set to create new designated cycle lanes, as well as a new signalised junction at Liverpool Street.

Harry Gray, Walk Ride Greater Manchester

But Mr Gray said the city is still lacking a clear plan for creating more cycling provisions, and warned that it could fall behind other areas of Greater Manchester.

He told I Love MCR: “It feels like the driving of new schemes has stalled.

“There’s an appetite for new infrastructure, there are more people moving to Salford who don’t drive or have a car, people who live in flats.

“The number of parking spaces being built is less but we need to offer people an alternative to driving. I think the city mayor feels it’s not his priority.

“In the past he could have had people driving the agenda for him in the council, but now it feels like there aren’t a lot of people driving that.

“We’re supposed to have a cycle champion but I’ve not heard anything from him, he’s not said there needs to be more infrastructure, and Salford doesn’t have a clear network plan.

“I’m concerned that work has stalled a bit, we need more push from the council on these issues.”

Eccles Old Road roadworks

Mr Gray added that roadworks which are due to begin on Eccles Old Road will see cycling facilities “regress”, with the removal of a bus lane planned alongside carriageway resurfacing.

In recent years, works have also taken place on Liverpool Street, which now benefits from a dedicated cycle route away from road traffic along parts of the road.

But new cycle schemes around Salford often face opposition in the council chamber, with Conservative members recently criticising the town hall for spending more on cycle lanes than fixing the roads.

Funding for new cycling infrastructure is often hard to come by, with Salford council dealing with a shrinking budget each year with increased demand for local services.

Salford Labour

A Salford Labour spokesperson said: “Over the past few years, we have invested millions in cycling infrastructure to encourage active travel in Salford, with multiple completed schemes across the city from Roe Green to Broughton making cycling and walking safer and more accessible.

“In Salford Labour’s manifesto, we have committed to expanding sustainable transport across Salford.

“As well as building on the trailblazing Bee Network and broadening the reach of e-scooters, this includes plans for extended cycling infrastructure, such as the multimillion-pound Oldfield Road Corridor scheme currently in the pipeline.

“We will work with Mayor Burnham and hopefully an incoming Labour government to continue to deliver active, greener travel options for all our residents.”

Salford Council was contacted for comment.

You can find out more about Walk Ride Greater Manchester by clicking here

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