Frequently asked questions
Where is the money coming from to pay for these cycling, walking and traffic improvements?
The scheme is being funded from the Greater Manchester Mayor’s Challenge Fund (MCF), which is a £160m fund that has been allocated to Greater Manchester from the Government’s Transforming Cities Fund.
£1.4m has been allocated to Wigan Council to support the delivery of the Victoria Street / Warrington Road junction improvement scheme.
Why can’t the money be spent on other things?
MCF funding is specifically designated for cycling and walking improvements. If this allocation wasn’t spent in Wigan for this purpose the money would be spent elsewhere in Greater Manchester.
Why do you want to increase the number of people cycling and walking?
Cycling and walking can be a great way to be active and stay healthy. Cycling is a comparatively cheap, quick, environmentally friendly and healthy way to get around. With increasing air pollution, we need to look at alternative, more sustainable forms of transport to the private car.
People don’t cycle in Wigan so why spend money on facilities that wouldn’t be used?
Research shows that if safe, convenient and direct cycle facilities are provided then cycling numbers increase. A lot of people are also put off cycling because they don’t feel safe cycling on the road. By providing segregated cycle facilities, cyclists can be separated from traffic and experience a much more secure and pleasant journey. This encourages more would-be cyclists to get on their bike.
Levels of cycling in Wigan are already slightly above the national average for journeys to work, and even more so in the Douglas/Pemberton/Marsh Green area. We now also have the cycling and walking infrastructure in place at Saddle Junction and Robin Park Road, which this new scheme will connect into making it easier for people to access the town centre, services and the Robin Park Retail Park by foot and by bike.
Why are you concentrating the cycling and walking facilities in this area rather than elsewhere in the borough?
We are developing a number of cycling and walking improvement schemes across the borough, including:
- Standish Mineral Line extension
- Bridgewater Canal Towpath
- Toucan crossings for Wigan Central
- Leigh, Atherton and Tyldesley
- A49 and Leeds Liverpool Canal corridors (Ashton - Wigan - Standish)
How will you make this junction safer?
The proposed scheme involves changing the junction to remove the traffic merge so that Victoria Street and Warrington Road have their own signal stages, i.e. when traffic on Warrington Road is moving through the junction traffic on Victoria Street is stopped and vice versa.
Pedestrians and cyclists currently struggle to cross this junction. We are therefore proposing to introduce controlled push button crossing facilities so that traffic can be stopped to allow safe crossing.
Will it take longer to drive through the junction when the works are complete?
The proposed scheme has been modelled by Transport for Greater Manchester and overall delays are expected to be reduced at this junction. The new A49 road is also due to open in Spring 2020, which we expect to take some traffic demand off this route.
Will any trees be removed?
Some trees will need to be removed to construct the scheme, some of which are at the end of their natural life. Any trees which need to be removed will be replaced within the immediate area. No newly planted trees will be destroyed, these will be relocated if necessary. All tree roots will be protected if any construction is taking place near them.
Will on-street parking be reduced?
Part of our proposals is to reduce the on-street parking in front of the houses at Hildyard Street, Mere Street and Woodyard Street. This is to allow for a new toucan crossing to go from Arundell Street across towards the new housing estate. This is a busy route, particularly for visitors to the nearby Alexandra Park, and will make their journeys safer.
It will also mean a road closure to the one-way street at Arundell Street and the proposal is to create a turning point on that street.
However, these proposals are still at consultation stage, and so we would welcome comments and feedback from local residents on this aspect of the scheme - share your views.
When will the construction work take place?
The works are planned to start in 2020, however there is still further work required to develop the scheme and so further details will be communicated via the council’s website and in the media as the scheme develops.
Will the construction works affect traffic?
Inevitably, with any construction works taking place on the highway, there will be some disruption. This will be kept to a minimum and work will take place outside of peak hours where feasible. Any lane closures or diversions will be communicated in advance and clearly signposted.
We recommend residents check the roadworks bulletin and follow the council’s social media channels for up to date information.