A public consultation has launched on proposals to upgrade the footpath that runs behind Fairlee Road into the town centre.
Under the scheme, the former railway line between Mews Lane and Newport Quay would be upgraded with a smooth, all-weather surface, creating a safer route for cyclists away from the busy main road.
As part of the plans, the path would also be widened in places to enabled shared use with pedestrians.
Councillor Ian Ward, Cabinet member for transport and infrastructure, said the scheme would provide greater connectivity to residential areas, schools, businesses and the town centre. He said:
“We may be in national lockdown now and staying at home to keep our community safe, but in time, more people will travel again.
“This plan will help more people to travel safely by bike or on foot, rather than in cars on their commute, all the while providing space to maintain social distancing.”
The footpath was identified as a priority route to and from Newport in the council’s Local Cycling and Walking Plan published last year. It has since secured £235,000 from the government through its Active Travel Fund to deliver the scheme, should it receive support.
Councillor Ward added:
“This funding has been provided to help us enable active travel routes during the COVID-19 pandemic that support people who cannot work from home to travel safely.
“We expect works to commence in the spring following consultation with local people, road users and those who already use the route. You can complete our survey online.”
To have your say on the plans, visit https://www.iow.gov.uk/Council/OtherServices/Sports-Development-Unit/Stay-Active-During-Lockdown/.