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Spaces for People fund success for North Ayrshire Council

Posted on 30 Jun 2020

North Ayrshire Council has been successful in its £100,000 project bid to make it safer and easier for people to walk, cycle and wheel as lockdown is eased.

The money has been awarded through the £30 million Spaces for People fund which is administered by Sustrans on behalf of the Scottish Government.

The funding will see a number of temporary infrastructure projects carried out to help people practice safe physical distancing and use active travel methods such as walking, cycling and wheeling for essential travel and exercise during Covid-19.  

Within North Ayrshire, the first of these works will be seen in Ardrossan, Dalry and Irvine. 

On Glasgow Street and Princes Street in Ardrossan and New Street in Dalry, footways will be widened to create more space for people to physically distance while walking and queueing outside shops. 

Marress Road in Irvine will see one lane per carriageway reallocated from vehicles to cyclists, providing a full cycle lane in each direction to and from the town centre.

Further works may also be carried out in the future as those who live in, work in and carry out essential journeys through North Ayrshire are being encouraged to let the Council know where they think the greatest need is for other temporary measures.

In partnership with Sustrans, the public can have their say via Commonplace, an online community consultation platform that allows people to identify locations that may need temporary adjustments to infrastructure to help people get about safely during Covid-19.

Councillor Jim Montgomerie, Cabinet Member for Green New Deal and Sustainability, said: “These works are to enable our residents and visitors to move around more freely and safely both to and within our town centres as the country navigates its way out of lockdown.

“As physical distancing is expected to be with us for some time yet, this funding will allow us to make some temporary adjustments to our infrastructure which not only promotes more active and sustainable travel, but also provides space for people to safely visit our towns.”

Karen McGregor, Director of Sustrans Scotland, said: “It’s clear that people across Scotland want to do the right thing during Coronavirus. They want to look after their physical and mental health.

“They also want to make sure that they are keeping to physical distancing guidelines while still being safe on our streets.

“Providing funding support to North Ayrshire Council through our Spaces for People programme will make it easier and safer for people to travel around North Ayrshire for essential travel and exercise.

“We hope people will engage with the Commonplace mapping tool – it’s really simple, clear and easy to give feedback.  Most importantly, it will help the Council get a clear picture of where temporary interventions are needed most.” 

The Council will monitor the temporary measures put in place and will adjust them accordingly as lockdown restrictions are eased further.

For more information, or to take part in the online consultation, visit the Spaces for People website