Are cy­cling lanes a waste of our cash?

NON­SENSE… Coun­cil leader speaks out as £367,000 is set aside for bike routes

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - OPINION - by Clare Mul­grew

Fund­ing found to fill the gaps in dis­trict’s cy­cle route sys­tem

AL­MOST £370,000 will be spent on im­prov­ing cy­cle routes in Ash­ford over the com­ing fi­nan­cial year.

But some mem­bers of the Joint Trans­porta­tion Board feel that the money would be bet­ter spent on mak­ing road im­prove­ments.

Coun­cil­lors were told that the miss­ing cy­cle link be­tween Lit­tle Bur­ton Farm, Ken­ning­ton, and the town cen­tre will be com­pleted. And other work will in­clude fin­ish­ing the Brook­field Road route, de­vel­op­ing a cy­cle route as part of Christ Church School’s travel plan and pro­vid­ing cy­cling fa­cil­i­ties as part of the ring road changes.

But Ash­ford coun­cil leader Cllr Paul Clokie said: “I see £100,000 be­ing spent here and there on cy­cle routes and the roads are fall­ing apart.

“Mil­lions of pounds are needed to re­pair the roads and I find it a non­sense to spend this much on cy­cle routes.”

Cars

How­ever, rep­re­sen­ta­tives from Kent High­ways told the meet­ing that good cy­cle routes were needed to en­cour­age peo­ple out of their cars and on to their bikes.

Kent County Coun­cil mem­ber Cllr Richard King said that the work was al­ready un­der way and needed to be fin­ished.

“This is fill­ing in the gaps that are left and mak­ing the cy­cle route a com­plete sys­tem be­cause oth­er­wise, the parts we have in place al­ready won’t be ef­fec­tive.”

The work is set to cost £367,000, with fund­ing from the Gov­ern­ment, cy­cle char­ity Sus­trans, Ash­ford Bor­ough Coun­cil and the Sec­ond Homes al­lo­ca­tion.

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