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Cycle campaigners call proposed trail changes “missed opportunity”

19 May 2024 4 minute read
Cardiff Cycle City has criticised plans to alter the Taff Trail at Hailey Park without its recommendations. Image by Cardiff Council

Ted Peskett, local democracy reporter

Cycling campaigners have criticised the council over its proposal to alter a popular cycle route in Cardiff.

Cardiff Council consulted on plans to alter a section of the Taff Trail that runs through Hailey Park which will involve widening the existing path and realigning sections of it.

Cardiff Cycle City, which made a number of recommendations including having a segregated path instead of shared one, were disappointed to find that the path will remain shared between cyclists and pedestrians.

In a statement issued this week, the campaigners called the council’s decision to continue with its proposal without the recommended changes a “missed opportunity”.

The council said its proposal aims to improve the trail and make it safer. The local authority also said Cardiff Cyle City’s proposed re-alignment of the shared path was not viable for a number of reasons.

Cardiff Cycle City said: “[Cardiff Cycle City] does not believe that the current proposal will reduce conflict between pedestrians and cyclists in the park.

“In fact, it is likely to increase conflict due to the disruption caused during construction and also because the council have seen fit to persist in using shared paths.”

Realigned

As part of the council’s plans, the southern section of the route that passes through Hailey Park will be realigned adjacent to Mary Street above the tennis courts.

The northern section of the path will also be realigned to avoid a narrow section that cuts through the trees separating the sports pitches.

Cardiff Cycle City proposed using the alignment of the Royal Glamorgan Canal to the north of Hailey Park and having the trail rejoin the original route further south.

The council said it decided not to go ahead with this for a number of reasons including the cost of realigning junctions on Station Road and Gabalfa Road, the potential conflict with the use of the lane running along the edge of the park and the protection of canopies and roots of mature trees which run parallel to the lane.

Campaigners also said they recommended the introduction of a school street for Gabalfa Road to tackle the volume of traffic and parking issues around Ysgol Glantaf.

Cardiff Cycle City added: “It appears that the council has given very little consideration to our proposals in this area, mostly on the grounds that they will cost more than the council’s scheme.

“We would be interested to know how much work has been done to determine the cost of implementing our school street proposal.

“Finally, we must again draw attention to the £4m Roath Park scheme where it seems that when the council is committed to providing effective active travel infrastructure, it is able to secure the funding to do so.”

Flawed scheme

Cardiff Council said the proposal to restricted through traffic on Gabalfa Road during school drop off and pick up times will be considered as part of the School Streets Scheme.

Some changes were also made to the council’s Taff Trail scheme following the consultation process.

Cardiff Cycle City went on to say: “It [the scheme] benefits no-one in its current form, and on that basis it would be better to do nothing at all than spend over £700,000 on a flawed scheme that nobody wants.”

A Cardiff Council spokesperson said: “The council wants to build a greener and more sustainable future for Wales’ capital city.

“As part of our Stronger, Greener, Fairer ambitions we are committed to improving cycling and walking routes. Over time this will give residents and visitors greener and healthier ways of moving around the city.

“The proposed cycleway in Hailey Park has been consulted on with the public and interested parties twice.

“Through this process, the shared use option was chosen, as the route is through a park, for different people using the park for different purposes. It isn’t intended as a high-speed commuter route for cyclists.”


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Steve George
Steve George
27 days ago

So cyclists want paths to themselves but want to share the roads. The entitlement of these middle class plonkers is just amazing! Cycle respectfully, slow down and use a bell! That’s the way to avoid conflicts!

Linda Jones
Linda Jones
27 days ago

I have had to stop walking along the Taff Trail because of the ‘psycho’ cyclists riding along at high speed with no regard for pedestrians. Its not safe.
Pedestrians are not safe sharing any public spaces etc with cyclists.

Annomous
Annomous
26 days ago

Their proposed plans have (quite rightly) been refused because they are ludicrous! They have proposed rerouting the cycle path along a narrow lane, that is frequently used by cars by the local residents to access their rear garages and properties, as they have a legal right to do. This lane cannot be widened, due to the mature trees that line Hailey’s Park, and the houses that have been there for 130 years! I believe they have suggested this lane is single use for cyclists, but literally hundreds of walkers use this rear lane to access Hailey’s Park and as a… Read more »

Karen Lewis
Karen Lewis
26 days ago

Surely cyclists can share a path with pedestrians without problems. They don’t need to speed when other’s are around so shouldn’t be a problem. I have cycling in my blood with my father racing and going to rallies. There was never a problem. Now cyclist want to rule. Just share it’s cheaper.

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