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Cycle lanes plan born during Covid crisis may become permanent

Temporary bike lanes could become permanent in a bid to cut pollution, meet lockdown rules and improve safety on a busy streets.

Cycle lanes could be made permanent in Wolverhampton city centre

Wolverhampton residents are being asked to give their views on new city centre transport, following the reopening of shops this week.

The council has set out a number of measures to maintain social distancing, reduce carbon emissions and make the streets safer for both shoppers and people who live or work in the city.

Speed limits on the Ring Road have already been reduced to 30mph in a bid to encourage more people to cycle or walk through the city, and a number of pavements have also been widened, notably in Stafford Street.

Further changes in the coming weeks include the use of ‘pop-up’ bike lanes, additional bicycle parking spaces and a possible trial around the use of e-scooters.

The measures are being introduced on a temporary basis, although depending on their success some could become permanent or semi-permanent, say council bosses.

Councillor Steve Evans (Lab. Fallings Park), Cabinet Member for City Environment, said: “The government have called on all councils to introduce emergency measures to encourage greater use of cycling and walking as more shops and other businesses open up in town and city centres.

“We have heeded the call and are now introducing a series of temporary, trial measures which will make it easier for people to walk and cycle into and around the city centre, as well as enabling social distancing.

“Creating a greener, safer city centre is a key priority for the council, so some of these measures are things we were looking to do anyway.

“We have had to implement them sooner than planned due to the pandemic emergency, so they are a trial and we want to know what the public think about them and hear their suggestions.”

Members of the public can give their views in a consultation which can be found on the council’s website at A Step in the Right Direction.