More than £700,000 could be spent on six cycle routes in Rutland as part of a £4m scheme to boost tourism and encourage sustainable travel.
Rutland County Council’s cabinet will consider plans to create the routes as part of its Government-funded Travel4Rutland project at a meeting on Tuesday.
A report to councillors says the scheme would provide links to the new ShoreLink bus route, connect tourists with heritage cycling routes and attractions and help make Rutland a “cycling county”.
Six routes have been identified from a possible 14. These would connect Langham and Whissendine, at a cost of £223,000; Oakham bypass to Uppingham Road, Oakham at £50,000; Oakham to Braunston along Braunston Road, at £204,000; extend the current route further along Oakham Road towards Ashwell, at £120,000; complete the off-road path at Lyndon Top, at £65,000; and extend the existing cycle path from the centre of Greetham to the junction with Thistleton Lane, Greetham at £60,000.
The routes were chosen after consultation with parish councils, Rutland Access Group, the British Horse Society, Bridleways Association, the Velo Club and other cycling organ-isations.
The eight rejected routes were from the A6003 in Uppingham to Preston; Edith Weston to North Luffenham; Preston to Uppingham via the quieter back roads; Normanton to Ketton; Cottesmore to Exton; Preston to Wing; Lyndon Top to Wing; and Tambourine Bridge in Ashwell Road to Ashwell village.
The council has £480,000 of its local sustainable transport fund to spend on cycling routes this financial year and £200,000 in 2014/15. A further £42,000 will come from the highways budget bringing the total cost to £722,000.
If the six routes are approved on Tuesday, detailed designs will be put to consultation.
The cycle routes are the latest step in the council’s £4m scheme to improve transport links in Rutland.
As part of the scheme, the council plans to spend £935,000 building a bus station in place of the closed public toilets in John Street, Oakham.
Work on the station, which will feature toilets, a storage room for bikes and a waiting room, is set to start next month. Some bus services will be re-routed through Oakham while the station is being built and the council will create temporary bus stops for passengers.
From November 11, services in and out of Oakham will start and finish in the layby in Catmos Street, outside either Oakham Library or Rutland Sports.
During this time the short stay car park spaces in Catmos Street will not be available, although the disabled parking space will remain, and temporary bus stops will be in place. The existing bus stop outside Barclays Bank will be converted into four car parking spaces.