York – Selby cycle track resurfacing completed

It has taken a long time, but most of the York – Selby cycle track, from the Ouse to Riccall, has now been resurfaced.

The surface is now level – to the point where someone was roller blading on it yesterday. That would have been virtually impossible previously because of root damage to the surface.

All sections of the route have now reopened.

There is work still to do.

Overgrowth obstructs the path in some places at this time of year with the worst affected section being located near Bishopthorpe.

….and the York Council maintained section, between London Bride and the A 64 southern by pass, continues to be an embarrassment to the City. We hope to see prompt action on improving this part of the route.

But credit to SUSTRANs – and the government for its grant support – for making the route accessible again at a time when more people will want to take advantage of the good weather.

Cycling News

York – Selby cycle path

The section between the Ouse and the B1222 has re-opened. There is now an excellent surface for cycling and walking.

Cycle path re-opened

The diversion via Naburn is still in place although road works in the village have now been completed

Further along the cycle track at Bishopthorpe, nettles are beginning to restrict the width of the path. It is already less than 2 metres wide in some places which makes it difficult for pedestrians and cyclists to pass. The same problem arose last year when, at one stage ,the complete path width was obstructed.

The Parish Councils, SUSTRANs and the York Council don’t regard it as their responsibility to keep the route unobstructed and safe. The route is howver shown on the Councils cycle route map

It is a particular problem for disabled users and children in push chairs.

The problem could be reduced by adding the stretch to the weed treatment programme.

Tadcaster Road

Rather different problems on Tadcaster Road as the consultation on changes to the layout gathers pace.

One area of controversy is the routing of cycle lanes at bus stops. The new proposals would see the cycle lane routed next to the footpath with passengers having to step over it to get to the bus.

With cyclists typically averaging speeds of between 10 and 15 mph this is viewed as a hazard particularly by young children and wheelchair users.

Confused priority proposal for Tadcaster Road

There is no easy answer. Putting the bus into a layby – with the cycle lane carrying straight on- would solve the issue at some locations but possibly at the expense of longer journey times as the buses may be delayed attempting to rejoin the main carriageway..

However, where practical, this would still seem to be the safer option.

There has been silence regarding one section of Tadcaster Road where a shared footpath is already less the 2 metres wide.

This is the section near the cemetery. Although vegetation was cut back during the winter, sight lines are poor in places and there is an ongoing conflict between students and others walking to the park and ride site and cyclists accessing the off road cycle tracks which link to Bishopthorpe, Copmanthorpe and Tadcaster.

The Council promised a solution to the London Bridge bottleneck as part of its £4 million upgrade, but nothing has been suggested during the current consultation.

Narrow shared use path near the cemetery

Cycle path works at Naburn nearing completion

The York – Selby cycle path was being resurfaced today near the bridge over the Ouse. Access remained open although it was necessary to walk for a short distance.

We understand that the the track will reopen tomorrow, between the bridge and the B1222, after which a diversion through Naburn will be available.

The final section between the B1222 and Vicarage Lane may take a further two weeks to complete.

Elsewhere the usual summer overgrowth problems are causing obstructions on both cycle and footpaths.

It tends to be the same locations each year. which are affected.

Skiddaw Woodthorpe cycle path obstructed. A similar issue arose last year

It is a shame that the York Council does not have a routine maintenance programme in place to keep cycle paths safe and usable all year round

One path that won’t be receiving any attention from the York Council is the off road path which links Rufforth to Knapton. Improvements to the surface of the path were promised a couple of years ago when the Council was trying to sell the idea of planting a wood on adjacent land. Tree planting has started but sections of the path remain in poor condition.

The Council has now said that they aren’t responsible for maintenance of the path. (despite it appearing on the cycle route map published by the Council).

One section near the tip is now obstructed by overgrowth.

Just who precisely is supposed to perform a basic maintenance task, on what is listed as a PROW, remains unclear,..

Rufforth Kapton cycle track. The section marked in blue is also a bridleway.

Cycling news

Sustrans have announced that work on resurfacing the cycle path between Naburn and Riccall will be completed this week. The section will then be reopened.

On Monday, the section between Vicarage Lane (photo) & Naburn Lane will then be closed for 6 weeks.

The section which runs along the A64 southern by pass has been resurfaced. It is now much smoother. Unfortunately it is already becoming obstructed by overgrowth. This is a problem on several paths each summer. The authorities seem unable to put even a basic maintenance programme in place and it is often left to volunteers to clear branches and weeds on an ad hoc basis.

There is still no news on improvements for the section of cycle path between Tadcaster Road and the A64 underpass. Work was supposed to have been completed last year as part of the project to provide additional football pitches in the area. It was the Councils responsibility to move the scheme forward but eventually it stalled. The only improvement which was completed was the installation of some lighting at the London Bridge underpass.

The Council has promised to bring forward revised proposals later this year.

Elsewhere the now ubiquitous Tier electric bikes and scooters have reached Gale Lane and Thanet Road. (Lidl). It is fair to say that opinions are mixed about the safety and hire costs of the scooters the use of which is restricted to highways (they cannot legally be used on footpaths)) The Tier App site – which includes details of charging arrangements and other regulations – can be found by clicking this link.

Tier hire bikes and scooter outside Lidl on Thanet Road

This won’t please many residents

Which roads will be resurfaced this year?

click to view

The York Council has published a list of roads and paths which will be resurfaced this year. The £6.997 million budget includes £1.2 million for the replacement of aging traffic signals

There are separate programme lists covering drainage/gulley renewal (£900k) the City Walls (£376k) and street lighting (£644k)

However it is the resurfacing programmes that will cause most controversy.

It has been obvious for some years that the Council was not making sufficient provision in its budget to keep the highway network in a safe condition

The publication of the list of streets has already prompted Councillors to call for the publication of the grading given to each street in the City by highways inspectors (as was done until fairly recently).

Many parts of the City will see no resurfacing work at all over the next 12 months.

In Westfield the plans only include surface dressing part of the carriageway on Askham Lane and some street light replacements. The section of the B1224 between Beckfield Lane and Oak Rise, which mainly falls within the Acomb Ward) will be resurfaced. It is unclear how this work will complement the Councils recent decision to improve cycling facilities on this route.

click to view

It is unclear how the Council has managed to under budget for this particular public service. Critics will point to the vast amounts of money borrowed to finance prestige schemes over the last few years. The interest charges on the borrowing is now restricting the amount available for repairs and maintenance budgets.

The detailed papers can be viewed by clicking this link.

The decisions on funding allocations were taking by officials at a behind closed doors meeting

NB. The Council has decided to renew the pedestrian crossing signals at the junction of Front Street and Green Lane. A report says, “

Director of Transport, Environment and Planning in consultation with Executive Member for Transport agreed to approve the works at the junction of Front Street and Green Lane, Acomb that:

  • Replace life expired traffic signal equipment and infrastructure
  • Refurbish the civil construction elements of the junction
  • Make minor alterations to the layout of the junction The reason for these works being to ensure that the junction can continue to be operated and to implement minor improvements that are not more significant than the core refurbishment works

No details of the “minor improvements” have been published.

Signals will be renewed on Fronts Street

York – Selby cycle route still closed.

UPDATE: We understand that the Escrick – Riccall section will reopen tomorrow (14th April). The Escrick Sidings to Naburn section will be closed from 19th April (i.e. after Easter)

The section of off road cycle path between Escrick Sidings and Riccall which was supposed to have reopened- following resurfacing work – is still closed.

The section between Naburn and Escrick Sidings is still open despite signs saying that it would close on 11th April (for about 6 weeks).

Hopefully this is to allow cyclists to use the route over the Easter holidays?

Hopefully the signs will be updated

York – Selby cycle track closed near Riccall

Updates: 24/2/2022

The planned maintenance on this popular leisure cycle track has commenced

it means that there is no access to the route approximately 2 miles north of Riccall. The closure will last for about two months and will allow for -much needed – resurfacing work to take place

Anyone hoping to cycle along the river bank will need a boat. It is likely to be a couple of days at least before flood waters recede

River Ouse near Naburn

The Council have started to install lighting in the London Bridge “tunnel”.. This forms the start point for the cycle path and lighting was one of the improvement promised by the Council some three years ago.

The lighting will allow visitors to view more easily the Stone Age graffiti which is an enduring “charm” of this section of the cycle track.

Workers were today installing electrical connections in the Tadcaster Road tunnel

Cycling improvements in west York

York – Selby

Sustrans have provided more information on their timetable for resurfacing the York – Selby cycle path between Escrick Sidings and Riccall.

Work starts next week on bridge maintenance. The route will be inaccessible for a few weeks..

The improvement is badly needed as tree root damage has made sections of the path unusable for some types of bike

Cycle path surface is on poor condition

Acomb

Meanwhile a political spat has developed over proposals to improve on road facilities for cyclists traveling from Wetherby Road to Holgate Road (B1224). The Council has announced plans to press ahead with improvements on the Acomb Road section of the route. The carriageways on this section are relatively wide and could accommodate cycle lanes with little engineering work required

Narrow uphill section of York Road

The Council, is not yet ready to announce how – or indeed if – it can provide better cycling facilities on the uphill section of York Road. There is little scope for carriageway widening on this part of the route

Instead the Council says that cycling provision will form part of a wider review of travel and access arrangements in the Front Street area more generally.

They are right to do so, although it is some two years since they announced a consultation exercise on the remodeling of Front Street.

Proposals have yet to see the light of day.

One option would see the pedestrianised section of Front Street opened up to , at least, cyclists. This would provide a quieter, level alternative route for some journeys.

Whatever they have in mind, the Council needs to brief residents now on what to expect and when.

Front Street pedestrian area