Mayors Challenge Fund (MCF) – A56 Chester Road to Talbot Road Cycling and Walking Improvements

During the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 and as part of the Emergency Active Travel Funding, We installed temporary cycle lanes on the A56 Chester Road and Edge Lane. This was to promote walking, wheeling and cycling choices for shorter journeys.

We held a consultation in November 2021 on the future of the temporary cycle lanes along the A56 Chester Road and Edge Lane. View the initial consultation report.

The feedback from this consultation was used to shape proposals for an active travel scheme along the A56 Corridor. The first phase of this scheme involved the introduction of active travel improvements on the A5014 Chester Road. This phase was built in March this year following a consultation carried out in November 2022.

The proposal improvement aim to keep the existing layout of the temporary cycle scheme on A56 Chester Road. Parts of this layout will be improved to boost cyclist and pedestrian safety.

We asked residents, businesses, and users of the area to have their say on the proposals to help shape the final scheme layout. The consultation on these proposals ran from 24 July to 10 September 2023.

View the 2023 consultation report

Maps of phase 2 proposals

Map A

A56 Trafford Phase2 MapA

Map B

A56 Trafford Phase2 MapB

Map C

A56 Trafford Phase2 MapC

Images of phase 2 proposals

Southbound prior to Edge Lane

Southbound

Northbound prior to Edge Lane

Northbound

Northbound indicating the future high streets Stretford development

The proposals include several improvements:

  • Existing temporary cycle lanes along the A56 Stretford to be replaced by cycle lane bollards separating the cycle lane and the main road. This is from the A56 / Talbot Road junction to a point just north of the M60 Junction 7.
  • A new buffer strip between the cycle lane and main road
  • New separate foot and cycle paths through the gyratory island at Barton Road and a new crossing at the traffic lights on the northern side. This allows safe crossing of the A56 and Barton Road for pedestrians and cyclists
  • Cycle lanes that run between bus stop lay-bys and the main road
  • Existing bus lane next to Stretford Mall to be removed
  • The A56 southbound to go back to two lanes of traffic at the Davyhulme Road junction
  • New vehicle loading restrictions on the A56 - no loading or unloading at any time

Next steps

The key issues identified have been passed on to the Design team to understand if and how these can be addressed through detailed design.  Wherever necessary these comments will be incorporated into the final design and if necessary, engagement with the local community and other stakeholders will be undertaken. The project team will remain mindful of the fact that safety of all those using this public space is important.  

While the consultation reflected an overall opposition to the proposals, the responses must be contextualised to inform but not dictate a way forward. There are a wider set of criteria that are factored-in and a result the rationale to proceed with the proposal remains, these criteria include:

  • Being in alignment and support both Greater Manchester’s and Trafford’s priorities of reducing health inequalities by encouraging residents to be more active, supporting people out of poverty by enabling affordable transport and to address the climate crisis by reducing emissions from road traffic.
  • The provision of a sustainable active travel spine along the A56 with segregated cycle lanes and will support the long-term growth, integration and accessibility for the adjacent developments and residential neighbourhoods.
  • That the results of traffic modelling of the proposals on A56 have indicated very limited impact on the overall network delays, which is contrary to the perceptions of additional congestion.
  • The proposals not only make more permanent the existing layout of the temporary cycle scheme on A56 Chester Road but also ensure that road space remains available for future active travel purposes.
  • The while proposals appear to offer “little driver benefit” to drivers there is consensus that they will result in improved and safer cycling and walking facilities which does encourage modal shift away from driving.
  • That specific design amendments to address several of the key consultation concerns, specifically related to improving the cycle crossings along Barton Rd and the gyratory, retaining three lanes for traffic at the exit of the M60, and ensuring segregation with cycle passes at bus stops.