We're consulting on plans for a permanent, segregated, two-way, safe space along the seafront between the North Shields Fish Quay and St Mary’s Lighthouse in Whitley Bay for people using sustainable and active forms of travel.
Following the temporary pop-up scheme along the seafront implemented last year as part of social distancing measures, which proved very popular while also presenting some challenges, we committed to seek future funding to deliver a revised, permanent scheme providing separate space for cyclists and other users of sustainable travel, while maintaining a two-way route along the seafront.
The new proposals, which are subject to a bid for funding from the Department for Transport’s Active Travel Fund (ATF), involve creating a permanent, segregated, unbroken two-way, safe space along the seafront.
Two-way traffic flow will be maintained between Whitley Bay and Tynemouth and the proposals also include improving safety along the road by introducing a 20mph limit and various supporting traffic safety measures.
The council has worked closely with coastal emergency services to address and resolve some of the design elements that created challenges for search and rescue operations with the previous temporary scheme.
Funding will also come from the council and walking and cycling charity Sustrans.
What are the benefits?
It will be a major step forward for the Elected Mayor and Cabinet’s pledge to create a cleaner, greener borough as part of its declaration of a climate emergency.
Creating separate space for people of all ages to enjoy safely on forms of sustainable and active transport, such as bikes, skateboards and scooters, along North Tyneside’s beautiful coastline will also further increase its appeal to visitors, supporting the local economy. The current shared use path will revert to a dedicated pedestrian footpath.
The scheme seeks to address conflicts between pedestrians and cyclists on the shared footpath and also conflicts between on-road cyclists and drivers along the seafront by creating segregated safe space for all.
The proposals also support the council’s commitment to encourage more people to take up active travel and adopt a healthier lifestyle.
The scheme will make it easier for people to safely access popular attractions like St Mary’s Lighthouse, Spanish City and Tynemouth Priory as well as the award-winning beaches and open spaces and support local businesses as part of the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Links to other parts of the borough
The new route will enhance the existing coastal section of the National Cycle Route 1 and will improve access from other parts of the borough.
It will serve local schools and places of work as well as linking into the new transport interchange planned for North Shields and pedestrianised parts of the town centre as part of the council’s ambitious regeneration plans.
Find out more and have you say
A six-week consultation is taking place between 13 September 2021 and 24 October 2021.
Separate consultation events will be arranged at various locations along the coast - more details will be available here.
Frequently asked questions
Watch our flythrough showing the proposed route from Whitley Bay to Tynemouth.