Tuesday, 30 August 2011

New Cycle Route

A useful new walking and cycling route was opened by Cllr Tim Huxtable on Bank Holiday 29th August.

It connects Sutton Coldfield via the New Hall Valley, through Pype Hayes park, to the Plants Brook nature reserve and the Birmingham and Fazeley canal.

Some mumblings were heard about it being 'a route to nowhere', but it seemed full of walkers and cyclists on its opening day. These schemes are popular and cheap to build (unlike some transport schemes!).
This is part of Bike North Birmingham, a new system of safe routes backed by BFOE, Pushbikes and Sustrans that will link up green spaces. There are several schools, a hospital and three railway stations on the routes, along with 2 new cycling hubs . People will experience another Birmingham - one not from at the wheel of a car.

Bristol is investing £21 million to become a Cycling City. Since Birmingham is twice the size that would equate to £40 million needed here. Bike North Birmingham's £4.1m could therefore be seen as the first 10% of what it will take to make Birmingham into a city that people start to feel safe to cycle around. The Selly Oak bypass cost £63 million, for comparison.

A significant new cycle route is being planned through Sutton town centre, and anyone who knows Sutton can give their ideas to the public consultation (ends ends on 26th September). Ask for details email bikenorthbirmingham@birmingham.gov.uk

John Newson

No comments: