Guidance on the provision of high quality walking and cycling routes in Wales has been unveiled by the Welsh government today (9 December 2014).
The Design Guidance for the Active Travel (Wales) Act 2013 sets out how authorities in Wales should plan and design networks of walking and cycling routes that connect key sites such as workplaces, hospitals, schools and shopping areas to encourage people to rely less on their cars when making short journeys.
Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism, Ken Skates, said: “We are committed to giving people better opportunities to walk and cycle, making them more active and healthier as a result. This also brings added benefits to the environment and will reduce the traffic on our roads.
“This document is an important part of our vision for more active travel. It provides the information and support needed for authorities in Wales to get the work of planning and designing suitable walking and cycling routes underway.”
The document draws together best practice on infrastructure design and gives guidance on providing vital related facilities, such as cycle parking. It also explains how improving conditions for walking and cycling should be integrated into all planning, design and highway maintenance.
The Active Travel (Wales) Act 2013 came into force in September and is considered to be a world first, placing clear obligations on local authorities to provide transport systems that enable walking and cycling to be the first and natural choices when people need to make short, everyday journeys.
The Deputy Minister added: “I am confident that this will make a big difference to the people of Wales, creating alternatives to the car, making routes safer for children and creating a healthier society as a result. This guidance will also help us to achieve our ambition of having the best walking and cycling infrastructure in Europe. It’s no wonder other parts of the UK are taking such an interest in what we are doing here.”