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More cycle paths planned to connect New Forest with Southampton

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MORE cycle paths will help to connect the New Forest to Southampton in a bid to get people out on their bikes.

Through the Transforming Cities Fund, Hampshire County Council is looking to provide cycle route improvements on the Waterside between Eling and Holbury, writes David George of the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

This route would also connect to Southampton’s cycle network, and the county council has launched a survey for locals to give their views.

HCC has launched a survey for locals to give their views
HCC has launched a survey for locals to give their views

Cllr Rob Humby, deputy council leader and cabinet member for economy, transport and the environment, said: "We want to improve facilities and networks for those who cycle to work in the area, for leisure and exercise, as well as help to encourage more people to leave the car at home and either cycle or walk for their local journeys.

"We’re keen to gather views on these proposals from as many people as possible, before we progress towards finalising any plans.

"This is a significant level of transport funding that will help us provide the infrastructure to transform people’s journeys whether they cycle, walk or travel by bus. It also supports our commitment to tackling climate change, contributing to our target to be carbon-neutral by 2050 and resilient to a two degrees rise in temperature."

From Eling, the existing plan adds a toucan crossing in Bury Lane with an off-road cycleway adjacent to Marchwood Road.

Further cycle paths will be added through Applemore towards Fawley, with four additional crossings.

The aim of the proposed scheme is to provide high quality cycle connections from Southampton to the Waterside.

The Department for Transport awarded £57m to the Southampton city region from the Transforming Cities Fund.

Cllr Jeremy Moulton, cabinet member for growth at Southampton City Council, said: "This is a holistic approach which recognises that people’s journeys cross boundaries and supports the long-term need to future-proof our growing city and get people moving.

"The investment in walking and cycling improvements on the Eling to Holbury section will continue the cycle improvements that have already been delivered in Southampton from the city centre to Totton.

"This will complete the route and remove the barriers for people making local walking and cycling trips; those coming into Southampton for work, education or leisure; and those accessing the New Forest and Waterside areas from Southampton."

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