Monday, 28 September 2009

Feedback on iconic bridge and harbour proposals

Residents of Rhyl and Kinmel Bay recently gave their views on plans for the redevelopment of the Foryd Harbour in Rhyl, including plans for an iconic cycle and pedestrian bridge.

Three public events were arranged to allow people to see the plans and speak to officers directly involved in the proposals.

The proposed landmark foot and cycle bridge will create a new crossing over the Foryd Harbour and link into a network of new and existing walking and cycling routes in the heart of Rhyl's regeneration area, opening up the area for everyday journeys by walkers, cyclists, people pushing buggies and using wheelchairs.

This bridge is the focal piece of the Sustrans' Connect2 route in Rhyl and at the heart of Rhyl's regeneration strategy. It has been made possible with funding from the Welsh Assembly Government, ERDF and Sustrans' Connect2 since Sustrans won the TV vote to bring £50 million from the Big Lottery Fund to walking and cycling to 79 communities across the country in December 2007.

General suggestions for improvement to the plans included a fish restaurant, café or some themed eatery; dredging the harbour to make it more navigatable; along with planting and seating improvements. There was good support for the need for clear cycle route signage and the plans in general for the site.

Twenty eight suggestions were put forward as a name for the proposed bridge, with most suggestions having connections with Clwyd, seagulls or Horton.There was one suggestion for the bridge to be called Pont Mileniwm (Millenium Bridge), as there is no millenium bridge in North Wales. Plans are to be developed next year for a naming competition for the bridge that will involve the local schools and communities.

Other findings of the consultation showed:

  • 76% of people that responded to the questionnaire wanted to see an illumination scheme on the new bridge to attract people’s attention and provide an iconic view at night as well as by day.
  • 38% wanted the bridge to operate at advertised times, with 30% dissatisfied with the idea.

Councillor David Thomas, Cabinet Lead Member for Regeneration, said: “There is still a lot of work to be done in achieving all the future developments in the plan but for now the Council has an approval for convergence funding for business units on the Kinmel Bay side to create jobs around the marine industry and the new cycle/pedestrian bridge.

“The Council is working with the users of the harbour to ensure these developments are suitable for the purpose and we will be working with the architects to include some of the above ideas in the final design and developments before applying for planning permission which will be the subject of further consultation as a matter of course.

Glyn Evans, Sustrans Area Manager for North Wales added: “We are pleased to see that public interest in the bridge remains high and that local people are keen to share their ideas about how the bridge might look and work and what other benefits it could bring to the area”

The completed boat storage facility is now open for business as well as the floating pontoon and hoist. Soon boat owners will be considering winter lay ups for their craft and if you are interested please contact Mark Budd, Maritime & Regeneration Officer on 01745 355456.


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