By Amy Orton, Local Democracy Reporter
Work has started on a new city centre pedestrian and cycle bridge connecting Lenton and the Boots site directly with Nottingham Science Park and University Boulevard.
It will offer access to tram and bus services via a 50 metre bridge over the Midland Mainline.
Access to the University of Nottingham and the QMC will also be improved which has been hailed as a ‘great addition to the existing network’.
The bridge will be reached by a footpath and cycleway off University Boulevard, between the tennis centre and land earmarked for future science park developments.
After crossing the railway line, the path will follow around the Boots site and connect with Thane Road and the Beeston canal.
Hugh McClintock, from Nottingham cycling charity Pedals, said: “University Boulevard is one of the best-used cycle paths in the city and there have been a lot of improvements in the area.
“Eventually we’d like to see the eastern corridor and western corridor linked up to include the Broadmarsh area.
“This addition to the network will not only see people travelling to and from work but it will a be a great leisure facility too.”
Portfolio holder for transport Labour Councillor Dave Liversidge thinks the Boots site is a ‘key’ part of the city.
He said: “Improved pedestrian and cycle links are key to unlocking its full potential to ensure the site is well connected to our existing transport network while helping reduce impact on local traffic.
“The Midland Mainline railway is a significant barrier between the campus and the other Enterprise Zone sites – Nottingham Science Park and the Medi-Park.
“Providing greater options for travel is part of our plan to keep Nottingham moving, making it easier for people to cycle and use public transport to reduce congestion on our roads so we can all get around more easily.”
Construction firm Eurovia has been awarded the contract to build the bridge, ramps and paths.
Built using treated steel to reduce future maintenance costs, the bridge will be lifted into place overnight later this year to minimise disruption to the mainline.
Director of the Nottingham Enterprise Zone at Boots Mark Chivers, said: “Our ambition has always been to improve access to the site and for the Boots Enterprise Zone to feel like a connected part of Nottingham.
“We’re making good progress building a new public highway.
“This new bridge will also benefit this vision, and create a new access route for our colleagues travelling to work on the tram.”