Bristol City Council are considering plans for a key strategic cycle route which would link communities divided by the M32. If it went ahead a two-mile cycle and pedestrian path would run alongside the railway line running from Lawrence Hill station to Montpelier station.
Cycling campaigner Josh Hart, a masters degree student at the University of the West of England, is the driving force behind the proposal. He believes the route, based around a disused rail line, would be ideal as it would provide a largely flat link between communities in east and west Bristol divided by the M32.
Mr Hart said: “It’s an exciting idea that has galvanised a lot of people living on both sides of the M32, adding “The potential of this project is immense because the Bristol to Bath cycle path could be extended from the east to the northern fringe and employment opportunities there.”
He also outlined the stages and potential obstacles the plan would have to go through:
- A feasibility study to look into land ownership and the condition of the bridges.
- A need to work in conjunction with Network Rail to make sure possible future rail use is not excluded.
Councillor Jon Rogers also thought the plan has great potential: “The path would be very gentle in both directions and would provide an opportunity to cross the M32 in a safe way. It’s a great idea.”
We have already reported on the challenge facing Bristol – spending the £23 million it was awarded as a Cycling City earlier this year by 2011.