New Bristol path is first link in northern route
Path opened by samba band

A new length of dedicated off-road path has opened in Bristol, Britain’s first Cycling City.

The path, from St Werburgh’s to Muller Road, is the first section of the new Northern Link route and features a solar-powered cats-eye lighting system. It has been landscaped to include fruit trees and a mini park beside the path.

When completed the Northern Link will connect Bristol's city centre to north Bristol and South Gloucestershire. The project aims to create links through local communities, while at the same time connecting the major out of town employers such as University of the West of England, the Ministry of Defence and Hewlett Packard, encouraging commuters to cycle to and from work.

Cllr Jon Rogers, Bristol City Council's cabinet member for transport and sustainability, said: "I was particularly keen to see this path meet the needs of local people and I think Cycling City has got the balance right. Path width and lighting were seen as sensitive issues for some residents. So we looked at a way of making the path safe and useable but without the glaring nuisance lighting."

He added: "The Northern Link is one of the largest projects we are undertaking in the city and we are hoping it will one day rival the Bristol Bath Railway Path in terms of use. That means more than tarmac. It means getting the whole experience right."

The opening of the first section of the new route was followed by a procession with a samba troupe and pedal-powered sound system through the railway tunnel on Mina Road.