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After long term campaigning by Real Whitby (Read all about it here), Three years of work on Whitby’s Infrastructure starts this September.
The works include:
The county council has earmarked about £250,000 for the swing bridge upgrade on top of the £3.661m awarded through the Department for Transport from the Government’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund.
The county council collaborated with the North York Moors National Park Authority to submit the successful Whitby and Esk Valley bid, which will deliver transport schemes and initiatives that can help to support economic growth while cutting carbon emissions.
Although the entire package submitted by the authorities was not included in the award, most of the measures in the bid will be delivered to sustain Whitby’s thriving tourist industry.
The work to the swing bridge, which will start mid-September, will spearhead the programme of works, which is due to continue to March 2015. The aim is to have the park and ride, which will be constructed on the A171 west of Whitby near Cross Butts Farm, ready for operation by spring 2014.
The county council will also revisit the June 2010 consultation about parking controls in Whitby and Sandsend to encourage the use of the park and ride facility, reduce congestion and improve traffic flows, help residents with parking through the introduction of residents’ parking zones and improve access to shops and businesses.
The swing bridge works will include:
In addition, the county council has taken on responsibility for the long-term maintenance of the bridge, which was built in 1909, from Scarborough Borough Council.
Maintenance work is carried out four times a year to reduce the likelihood of mechanical failure. The bridge’s computerised technology is also being updated so that faults can be tracked and located precisely to prevent failure and speed up repairs.
County councillor Joe Plant, the local member for Whitby, said: “This is a long-awaited, major programme of work for the town, which will help to sustain our very successful tourism industry by easing congestion and improving the flow of traffic while improving life for Whitby’s long-suffering residents. We are delighted that at long last this work is about to begin.”
Works will also start shortly on the Esk Valley rights of way network, developed by the National Park Authority alongside the county council.
This includes improvements to seven rights of way schemes along the Esk Valley at Castleton; Grosmont and Goathland, south of Whitby and near Robin Hood’s Bay.
The works also include a new £50,000 bridge between Grosmont and Goathland to connect existing routes and bridleways.
Andy Wilson, chief executive officer of the North York Moors National Park Authority, said: “We are delighted to be part of this scheme which recognises Whitby’s pivotal role in tourism and its traffic problems.
The improvement to the local path network will allow visitors to explore the outstanding heritage and wildlife of the local area and connect with the historic railway.”
County Councillor Gareth Dadd, executive member for highways, said: “Whitby is one of the country’s major centres of tourism and this wide-reaching programme of works will provide the town with the transport infrastructure it so rightly deserves.”