A newly improved and widened Comber Greenway is now available to be shared by those choosing the seven mile path for walking, cycling or running.
Recent improvements have widened the Greenway to four metres along key parts of the route, helping encourage more people to opt for sustainable and active travel, a key aspect of the draft Programme for Government and an outcome from the recently published outcome delivery plan.
Speaking today from the Greenway in east Belfast, Department for Infrastructure Permanent Secretary Peter May said:
“It is clear many more people are opting to walk or cycle if they can and as a Department we are working to help people opt for sustainable and active travel, which is better for them and better for the environment.
“The Comber Greenway is a highly used, traffic free route for many cyclists, walkers and runners, connecting East Belfast with Comber and I hope this investment of almost £600,000 will encourage many more people to consider active travel, especially during the better weather and as Bike Week approaches on 9 June.”
The improvement scheme has been jointly funded by the Department for Infrastructure and Department for Communities and carried out in close collaboration with Sustrans, Belfast City Council, Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council and Ards and North Down Borough Council. The Department is continuing with final works over the next few weeks.
Alistair Megahey from the Department for Communities said: “The Comber Greenway project is a great example of what can be achieved when stakeholders work together for the benefit of the community. I am delighted that my Department has been able to play an important role, in line with our regeneration objectives to help create attractive, safe, sustainable environments that improve the quality of life for people in our local neighbourhoods; goals which all the agencies involved share.”
Today also marks the launch of the new One Path initiative, which aims to promote good behaviours by all users of this shared path, developed by Sustrans in partnership with the Department and Councils.
Rachael Ludlow-Williams, from Sustrans said: “We ran a series of engagement activities a year ago on the Comber Greenway to discuss behaviour and how people could share the path better without conflict. The first phase was very successful and we are repeating it over this summer, so look out for our schedule of events. The overall message which we are conveying through One Path is Share, Respect, Enjoy.”
Later this year, the Department will also be consulting on a lighting scheme for the area and ducting was laid as part of this improvement scheme, in preparation for a future lighting project subject to community support and available budget.
Notes to editors:
- The Comber Greenway is a 7 mile route between Belfast and Comber and runs through the council areas of Belfast City Council, Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council and Ards and North Down Borough Council.
- Widening work is also continuing between East Link Road and Millmount Chase and will incorporate a new and improved crossing route the Old Dundonald Road and Comber Road junction to reduce the gradient for cyclists and remove steps for pedestrians. Completion of this work will bring the total cost of the project to around £570,000.
- The Department for Communities provided £350,000 of funding through the Belfast Regeneration Directorate’s Public Realm Environmental Improvement programme
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