Published: 3rd FEBRUARY 2021

Making the Bristol and Bath Railway Path better for all

One Path BS5 is a collaborative design project for the Bristol and Bath Railway Path. It seeks to address issues that sometimes arise on the very busy 1.5 mile stretch of the path between Clay Bottom and Trinity Street.

Latest project news: Autumn 2021

Site preparatory works will be carried out from Thursday 2 December to Wednesday 8 December at Clay Bottom.

The section of path will be closed with a signposted diversion in place via a parallel residential street.

Contractors will be on site preparing for the construction of a new wall adjacent to Rose Green Road by drilling boreholes on the path at Clay Bottom.

This preparatory work is part of a series of improvements to the path.

The aim of the project, which is nearing the construction phase, is to make a particularly busy stretch of path, between Clay Bottom and Trinity Street, a safer and more inclusive space.

Summer 2021

We’ve been working hard to finalise all the technical details before we move into the construction phase. 

We’ve produced detailed plans and are working to obtain the consents and approval we need to get to work on the ground.

The pandemic has impacted project timelines, and we now expect construction to start in early 2022.

We’ll keep working on our detailed preparations, and look forward to being able to start work on the path soon.

We've also secured additional funding for improvements to be made along the path in South Gloucestershire. 

With the funding, South Gloucestershire Council will tackle the ongoing drainage issues at Staple Hill tunnel.

There will be some resurfacing on the path, and they are looking to make improvements to access and crossing points.

About the One Path: BS5 project

The Bristol and Bath Railway Path has been meeting the needs of the local BS5 community for over 40 years.

It provides a much-loved inner-city green space to enjoy, travel, rest, socialise and reflect in.

In recent years, the popularity of the path has led to issues of conflict between some path users, and some people have been put off using the path as it’s not felt accessible to them.

Sustrans has been working in partnership with Bristol City Council and communities using and local to the railway path, to find solutions through this project.

The project is funded by the Department for Transport.

Through a series of workshops, surveys, online and in-person sessions, we have been working with different communities on the changes they want to see on the path.

The aim of this project is to make the path a safer, more inclusive space, where no one is excluded.

Local residents let us know their thoughts about the Bristol and Bath Railway Path at our community engagement events

Making the route more inclusive, accessible and enjoyable

Speaking about the project James Cleeton, Sustrans’ director for the south of England said:

“We’re really excited to finally be able to share these designs.

“Over the last two years, we’ve engaged with a huge number of people who use the path, or who would if their needs were better met by it.

“The designs reflect the input of a large number of people, ranging from:

  • families taking their children to school
  • to people using the path to cycle to work
  • to community groups using the space
  • and those looking to get out in nature in this otherwise very urban part of the city, to name just a few.

“The communities’ passion for the path is clear, and they have been crucial to the design process, shaping the conversation and helping us create designs to meet their needs.

“With so many people using the path in so many different ways, creating a balanced design that improves things for everyone has been a big challenge.

“Our hope is that this redesigned section of path is one that will now be far more inclusive, accessible and enjoyable for the many types of uses, now and in the future.”

Sustrans is very grateful for all the thoughtful and thorough inputs we received from the communities who use this path.

Background information

These technical documents informed the designs:

  • Feasibility study: this sets out the engineering opportunities and constraints at different points along the path. This includes ecological considerations, for example protected wildlife habitats, and topographical constraints
  • Topographical survey information: this is an accurate physical site assessment that shows where features - like trees and lamp posts - are located along the path. It also shows site boundaries
  • User count data: this is an open data set that shows the number of people using the path at the Whitehall section
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