Improving cycling facilities on the A629

Cllr Barry Collins

The tough terrain of the Tour de Yorkshire showed that Calderdale is a fantastic destination for skilled cyclists, but Calderdale Council is also encouraging riders of all abilities to get back in the saddle with planned improvements to cycling infrastructure in the borough.

Cycling is a popular activity in Calderdale, with participation rates for the sport higher than the Yorkshire or national average. However, using cycling as a method of commuting or as a mode of travel for everyday activities is less popular.

As part of the work on the A629 improvement programme a combined pedestrian/cycle path will be created for those travelling towards Halifax on Salterhebble Hill, with a marked cycle lane progressing through to the Shaw Hill junction. Cycle plans for the next stage of the project, the Calder and Hebble junction, will also include a full width footway and cycle path.

Cycle safety has been an important aspect of design work for the project. The new lane will encourage less confident cyclists to use the separate space, with the improvements to the road design improving traffic flow and reducing emissions from standing traffic.

Improving the air quality of the area is a priority for the A629 work. The road is used by over 40,000 vehicles a day and the planned improvements will better manage these heavy traffic flows and accommodate for future growth. The reduction in congestion will help minimise harmful emissions and their impact on local air quality.

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economic Strategy, Cllr Barry Collins, said:

“We know that Calderdale’s beautiful countryside lends itself to cycling for sport or leisure, but we want to improve facilities to encourage people to cycle more as a mode of transport.

“Plans for the A629 projects have been carefully designed, not only to reduce congestion for motor vehicles, but also to improve the infrastructure for cyclists. This has also been a key element of work on the planned improvements within Halifax town centre, where there will be clearly defined cycle areas.

“We want the future of cycling in Calderdale to be one of safety and accessibility, encouraging everyone to get on their bikes and get active.”

The investment facilitates the Council’s pledge to be the most active borough in the north of England by 2024 through the Active Calderdale campaign.

The A629 project is the largest individual scheme in the West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s West Yorkshire-plus Transport Fund programme, which is investing £1 billion over 10 years in more than 30 transport infrastructure schemes across West Yorkshire and York.

The West Yorkshire-plus Transport Fund has been part-funded through the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Growth Deal – a £1 billion package of funding to drive growth and job creation across the Leeds City Region. The aim is to create around 20,000 new jobs and add £2.4 billion a year to the economy by the mid-2030s.

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