The visit was part of a wider tour of five recently completed transport schemes in Warrington which are having a hugely positive impact in the town.
The £19.89m Centre Park Link – with its new bridge crossing across the River Mersey from Chester Road - fully opened to traffic in March 2021 helping reduce traffic congestion and provide alternative routes
The scheme has improved the overall capability of Warrington’s transport network to deal with incidents and is helping make journey times shorter and more reliable for motorists and public transport users. It has also unlocked areas of land for development, bringing new jobs, housing and investment to Warrington
The latest statistics show that Centre Park Link has typical daily flows of 10,000 vehicles, visibly reducing congestion at Brian Bevan Island and Bridgefoot and on the approaches at Wilderspool Causeway, Chester Road and Wilson Patten Street. Since its opening, the link has been used by an estimated 3 million vehicles.
Centre Park Link is just one of a number of major transport schemes completed in Warrington over the past year, delivered by the council with funding support from the Local Enterprise Partnership Local Growth Fund programme and Homes England’s Housing Infrastructure Fund.
As part of the tour, council members and officers also visited:
• The Chester Road cycleway, which is providing a new, 1.4km cycle-friendly route linking three key bridges on the River Mersey. It runs between the new Centre Park Link bridge, the blue bridge into Centre Park, and across Knutsford Road bridge at Bridgefoot, before linking into Lower Bridge Street in the town centre.
• The upgraded Trans Pennine Trail in Latchford, between Knutsford Road and Wilderspool Causeway, which is providing improved connections into nearby parks and residential areas and allowing people to travel sustainably, healthily and safely.
• Omega Local Highways phase 1 (Lingley Green Avenue/Omega Boulevard), which has delivered road and active travel improvements, including the construction of an enlarged roundabout and carriageway widening, new toucan crossings and new and upgraded shared foot and cycle paths.
• Omega Local Highways phase 2b (Lingley Green Avenue/Liverpool Road), which is improving journey times in the area, reducing queuing and providing better walking and cycling facilities.
Warrington Borough Council Deputy Leader, Cllr Cathy Mitchell, who took part in the tour, said: “It’s fantastic to see these transport schemes – which are helping us transform travel in Warrington, tackle the climate emergency, and encourage walking and cycling – operating so successfully in our town. To have completed so many key projects, despite the challenges brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, is a real achievement.
“Centre Park Link is making a huge difference to journeys in and around the heart of Warrington, keeping our town centre moving, making it much easier and quicker to get around, and providing smoother, faster journey times for thousands of motorists around Bridgefoot and Chester Road,
“This scheme – along with several others across the borough – are helping us deliver our ambitions for high quality transport infrastructure which reduces congestion, encourages walking and cycling and supports Warrington’s growth.”
Also in attendance on the tour was the Council’s Cabinet Member for transportation, highways and public realm, Cllr Hans Mundry. He said: “The delivery of such a significant number of transport projects and highways maintenance schemes over the past year has been a real success story for Warrington, and bodes well for our future.
“The massive scale of investment we have made into our transport networks will continue to deliver economic, environmental and quality of life benefits to our residents, employees and visitors for many years to come.
“We have much more to do, but the success of these schemes shows we are making good progress in our vision - set out in our Local Transport Plan (LTP4) - to make Warrington a thriving, attractive, accessible and well-connected place, with high quality, walking, cycling and public transport networks.”