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12/16/2019 - New milestone reached in cycling drive


A big push in Inverness to encourage more people to cycle to work and take healthier travel options is paying dividends.


Increasing numbers are beating traffic congestion and helping their fitness and the environment by taking to their bikes.


Evidence of the increased usage was recorded this week on the Millburn Road Cycle Route, which provides safe cycling between Inverness College UHI Campus, Beechwood Business Park/Raigmore and the city centre.


A cycle counter on Millburn Road hit the milestone of 100,000 trips for the year – the first time this total has been reached since the installation of the counter in 2014. This year’s total already represents a 30% increase in trips over the last four years.


The good news has been revealed as HITRANS, the regional transport partnership for the Highlands and Islands, and The Highland Council develop plans to keep Inverness at the forefront of the active travel agenda, through projects such as the creation of the Inverness Active Travel Network and the production of an active travel map for the city.


“The data is very encouraging indeed,” said Ranald Robertson, Director of HTRANS. “It demonstrates that more and more people are making smarter travel choices.  This can only be good news in benefiting people’s health, reducing traffic congestion and reducing our carbon footprint. We are working extremely hard with our council partners in the Highlands and Islands, Transport Scotland and Sustrans to promote active travel.” 


Fiona McInally, The Highland Council’s Inverness Active Travel Network Manager, cycles to work whenever she can.  She said: “It is very encouraging to see the significant rise in cycle journeys on Millburn Road and I am sure that this increase is reflected on other active travel routes in the city. Small changes can have big impacts and people will soon feel the benefits of cycling to school or work or for in pursuit of leisure activities. Our city is roughly 5 miles wide, which is the ideal length for an active daily commute.”

Vikki Trelfer, HITRANS Active Travel Officer, has produced an updated active travel map for Inverness and is working on maps for other main communities in the Highlands and Islands.  She said: “The Highlands are a great place to cycle. Promoting the benefits of cycling and investing in infrastructure will be a key part of achieving our goal of becoming a low carbon Highlands by 2025.”


The counter on Millburn Road was installed by HITRANS in 2014, just before the Golden Bridge was built and the creation of the Millburn Road cycle route to the Inverness campus.  It has shown a steady annual increase in numbers from 72,469 in 2015 to a new record for Inverness of 100,000 by early December with the total likely to rise to around 104,000 by the end of the year.


The high-profile counter displays the date, temperature, the number of cyclists passing on the day, and the total for the year.  It works with two sensors embedded into the path which count each bicycle passing over them.


The route from the city centre to the Inverness College UHI Campus follows the shared use path on Millburn Road, along King Duncan’s Road into the Raigmore Estate, and over the Golden Bridge.  There is also a shared use path running from the end of MacKintosh Road to link with Raigmore Hospital, the Centre for Health Science and Beechwood Business Park.


The Highland Council is working in partnership with Sustrans Scotland, as part of the Inverness City Active Travel Network, to develop enhanced active infrastructure between Millburn Road  and the Golden Bridge, close to the Raigmore Interchange.


More information on this, and the other projects in development are available on the Commonplace website for the project:   


Copies of the Inverness Active Travel Map are still available in local bike shops.

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