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Cyclists want Transport Plan to include those on two wheels
A CYCLING club is urging Dorset County Council to consider the needs of those on two wheels as it moves forward with the Dorchester Transport and Environment Plan (DTEP).
Consultation has now closed on DTEP, which aims to improve traffic flow and pollution in the town.
But Dorchester Town Council is among those calling for a fresh look at the proposal with possible amendments to be made before any scheme is adopted.
Roland Tarr, from the Cyclist Touring Club (CTC) West Dorset, says his organisation and Transition Town Dorchester want to make sure the council also take the opportunity to include a clear plan for cyclists in the scheme.
They want the council to work with sustainable transport organisation Sustrans and local schools to ensure the maximum benefits for cyclists and alternative ways of getting about are realised.
Mr Tarr said Dorchester is an ideal location to develop cycle tourism, which could bring money into the town.
He compared it to the South West Coast Path, which brings in an estimated £300million to £500million into the region.
Mr Tarr said: “We have got the walks, we have got the alleyways here and there where people do cycle, some of which are already part of the national cycle way.
“One dimension is about getting kids to school and their parents being able to get to work by cycling or work.
“Sixty per cent of traffic every morning and evening is meant to be school traffic and if that was reduced it would make a big difference.
“The second dimension is about tourism, which could be really big.
“These people will all be spending money in the town, which is what Dorchester wants.”
Mr Tarr said the scheme could draw inspiration from its continental counterparts in areas such as Germany or other towns in this country that are a lot more cycle friendly and benefit from cycle tourism.
He said the CTC was hoping to liaise with partner towns in other locations to see what works for them and what could be could be adapted in Dorchester.
He also wanted school children to be involved in investigating successful schemes and coming up with solutions.
A Dorset County Council spokesperson said: “One of the main aims of the Dorchester Transport and Environment Plan is to ‘improve access for pedestrians, cyclists the elderly and disabled’.
“With this in mind Dorset County Council will continue to work with Sustrans and other cycling groups to ensure that any scheme taken forward meets the needs of all users.”
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