Your views wanted on county council proposal for Birchington to Margate cycle route

The cycle route proposal

A new cycle route between Birchington and Margate – following the Canterbury Road – is being planned by Kent County Council.

The project is part of the Active Travel scheme being funded by central government.

Kent County Council has been granted £6.1million for five proposed schemes, including the Birchington to Margate Sands cycle route.

The schemes aim to encourage active travel, which means walking or cycling for transport as well as for leisure.

KCC says the schemes will support local high streets and businesses by increasing footfall and making efficient use of  road space;  help address public health crises by enabling residents to get active and stay healthy; encourage cycle and pedestrian friendly streets; provide a variety of safe and efficient means of transport and improve air quality.

For the Thanet scheme KCC wants to introduce the cycle route, install road safety measures, signs and cycle parking, possibly redesign some junctions and crossings and reduce the amount of through traffic and road danger in neighbourhood areas.

Improvements throughout the area such as seating, tree planting and landscaping are also suggested.

The scheme is now out for public consultation to gather views and also suggestions on the exact route.

The  idea is for a east-west cycle route linking Birchington to Margate and north-south cycle route improvements to connect to coastal roads.

Consultation documents from KCC say: “We want to understand and incorporate the views of local residents, stakeholders and the travelling public in our proposals. Feedback will be vital in helping us shape how the schemes are progressed.”

The consultation closes at 23:59pm on Tuesday, January 19, 2021.

Following the end of the consultation, a report will be compiled summarising the analysis of the feedback which will help shape the development of the scheme.

In Summer 2021, KCC will carry out a second consultation to present designs, with more detail of the schemes, and ask for more feedback to ensure that they best suit the needs of local communities.

Previous active travel schemes in Thanet included the Westgate one-way system and Broadstairs bus lane, both of which were scrapped after resident complaints. Neither of those schemes had been consulted on in advance.

The 5 proposed schemes

Canterbury: Littlebourne Road to the City Centre

Folkestone: Central Railway Station to Cheriton

Thanet: Birchington to Margate Sands

Folkestone: Hythe to Dymchurch

Gravesham: Gravesend to Northfleet

Find the consultation page here