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Welsh Government accused of “riding roughshod" over its own Active Travel Act

Campaigners say bypass plans make active travel an afterthought

Welsh cycling campaign groups are accusing the Welsh Government of “riding roughshod" over the Welsh Government's Active Travel Act with plans for a 125m Caernarfon and Bontnewydd bypass.

Sustrans Cymru, Ramblers Cymru and Cycling UK are urging the Welsh Government to consider changing current proposals that "risk safety" and do not provide enough provision for walking and cycling.

The Welsh Government wants to build a new six mile (10km) road to help ease congestion on the A487 between Plas Menai and Llanwnda.

Glyn Evans from Sustrans Cymru said the route "cuts across a number of important walking and cycling routes" and, as it stands, "will make it harder and more dangerous for people going to and from work or school, running an everyday errand, or enjoying the beautiful countryside”, according to the BBC.

He added: “Once the inquiry is complete, its findings are clear and the Welsh Government has responded ,we will consider our options. This is in many ways a test case of how the Act will be implemented. We will continue to work with local residents to help ensure the best possible outcome for walking and cycling.”

He added that suitable active travel provision for the bypass might cost around £5m – “well under 5% of the overall scheme cost”.

“The main point, and one that would help to reduce these costs, is that active travel is planned in from the very early stages of schemes and not seen as an expensive add on.”

A public inquiry is now under way and should a decision be reached to go ahead, construction on the new bypass could begin in the autumn.

 

After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.

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