Walking and cycling routes in the county could get a boost at Worcestershire County Council’s next Cabinet meeting, if plans to progress two bridges are given the green light.
Kepax Bridge in Worcester and Hampton Bridge in Evesham are scheduled to be discussed at the meeting next Thursday (18th March).
Councillor Ken Pollock, Worcestershire County Council’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for Economy and Infrastructure said “These bridges would be two big steps forward in our commitment to improve our walking and cycling infrastructure across the county.
“I’m hopeful that my colleagues will endorse the request at Cabinet to move both bridges forward, albeit they are in different stages of development.
“In the last 12 months, we have already delivered a number of schemes to improve walking and cycling routes including a number of improvements in and around Bromsgrove, the opening of Crookbarrow Way and Hams Way footbridges in Worcester as part of the Southern Link Road scheme and more recently, the full refurbishment of Sabrina Bridge in the centre of Worcester.”
Kepax Bridge is further ahead in the planning stage, as planning permission was submitted by Worcestershire County Council last year and is due to be determined later this year.
Cabinet is being asked to authorise expenditure on the scheme once planning permission is granted and work could then start on the bridge.
The scheme aims to provide improved cycle and pedestrian connectivity to the north of Worcester City and to enhance links along the riverside.
Building on the success of the Diglis Bridge, Worcestershire County and Worcester City Councils are working in partnership to provide this new walking and cycling bridge over the River Severn between Gheluvelt Park and Kepax.
The Hampton Walking and Cycling Bridge in Evesham, across the Avon was identified as a requirement as part of the planning submission for the Hampton housing development to the west of the town in 2014. The bridge would provide a direct link from Hampton to the Town Centre, schools, employment and the rail station.
The bridge would also help to tackle the lack of capacity in Evesham’s transport network that leads to congestion, poor journey time reliability and reduced air quality by providing a viable alternative to the car for short local journeys.
If the Cabinet recommendations are supported, it will mean work can continue on all elements needed for the planning application to be submitted later this year, which will include engagement with local residents and businesses.
You can read more about the Kepax Bridge and Hampton Bridge Cabinet papers on the County Council website.