Creating an off-road cycle route between Spott and Dunbar has potential for significant benefits for the communities in the area, including the opportunity for modal change of transport habits.
Previous studies highlighted the inadequacy of safe pedestrian routes on country roads and the relative lack of permeability of the now dual-ed A1.
In 2019, Spott Community Association applied for funding from Sustrans to address the lack of segregated cycling facilities. This paid for a feasibility study including a route options appraisal.
Trip generators both in Dunbar and Spott have been identified. Desire lines have been determined.
A preliminary community event was held and strong support for the project was expressed.
The Covid situation has caused the planned full community consultation to be deferred.
We have identified all relevant landownership south of the A1. We have written pre-legal agreements with some landowners on the route. We continue to negotiate with other landowners.
A large amount of baseline data has been researched and collated. A deficit of road traffic monitoring data as well as a lack of cycle traffic monitoring data have been identified.
Creating a viable path route from Spott has considerable challenges in the form of various significant constraints, and especially topography, and the latter is a key barrier though solutions have been proposed.
Many routes have been explored and appraised in a structured manner.
A small number of strong candidate routes have been identified which all utilise the A1 underpass at Eweford.
The proposed routes use private roads and a quiet public road, and therefore the business case for the project is strengthened by these cost savings.
The inadequacies of cycle route provision in the recent housing developments of southern Dunbar have been identified as an additional issue to be addressed.
We have identified two preferred options for the proposed route, that optimises directness, safety and comfort.
An outline costing estimate of £1.16m for ‘global project costs’ has been calculated.
Creating a high quality cycle path that can provide a safe and direct crossing of the A1, and that links the coast to the hinterland, will be transformational for Dunbar, Spott and the inland villages.