Park and path plans revealed

November 24 2021

PLANS to transform the area around Emersons Green skatepark have been unveiled.
The scheme, part of South Gloucestershire Council’s Linking the Greens project announced at the start of this year, aims to improve access between Lyde Green and Emersons Green for pedestrians and cyclists.
The plans submitted by the council for planning permission will include:
• A new ‘linear park’ next to the skate park.
• A 4m (13ft) tall bronze sculpture.
• Lighting for the skatepark to enable it to be used until 10pm every night.
• A new multi-user path linking Newlands bridge and Emersons Green Retail Park.
• Upgrades to the path and steps from Acorn Drive in Lyde Green to the Newlands footbridge.

A South Gloucestershire Council spokesperson said: “The Linking the Greens project will enhance and promote sustainable travel in Emersons Green and Lyde Green.
“It is hoped the scheme will also promote cultural links between the two communities on either side of the A4714 Ring Road.
“We have submitted a planning application to improve and enhance the skatepark in Emersons Green. This includes adding floodlighting in response to requests by users of the park, which will be installed in the second half of 2022.
“We also propose to clear the area, create two new pathways to improve access and landscape the site.
“We will additionally be introducing a series of community-inspired artwork, including a steel pergola and a 4m bronze sculpture of a clover that is commonly found in the Emersons Green area.”
A report on the artwork says the clover was chosen after a community consultation as “it’s a regenerative plant important for soils, a wild flower and recognisable to the community, with beautiful leaves”.
Other artwork in the scheme will incorporate designs produced by residents during a ‘press and print’ community project held earlier this year.
The Lyde Green side of the scheme will involve resurfacing and widening of the bridleway which links Acorn Drive to the Newlands footbridge over the Avon Ring Road, replacing the steps to the bridge, providing seating and an “entrance gateway and way-marking feature with integrated artwork”.
On the Emersons Green side a new “linear park” would be created next to the skate park.
The council spokesperson confirmed that creating the new park would involve levelling mounds which were originally created as a BMX track next to the skate park but have since become overgrown.
The park would include a “multi user path” for pedestrians and cyclists, from the Newlands bridge directly to the retail park.
The open space will be planted with wild and meadow flowers, with hedges and trees around the edges.
There are also plans to plant “community orchard trees”, which will be trained along a steel trellis, with a steel pergola feature also due to be built and planted with wisteria.
Lighting for the paths would also be installed, in addition to the separate floodlighting for the skate park. The skatepark lighting would be timed to switch off at 10pm every evening.
In its application the council says the path lighting scheme “will carefully balance the need for public access and safety with the needs of wildlife, especially bats, by maintaining the low light levels along the existing native hedgerow”.
After the work is finished South Glos Council would remain responsible for the new pathways but management of the park could be handed over to Emersons Green Town Council.
The South Glos spokesperson said negotiations between the two councils were continuing.
The plans would leave a cleared and levelled piece of land, around 35m by 17m in area, between the new path and the ring road next to the skate park, vacant for future development.
The council is inviting comments on its plans until December 3.
They can be found by searching for application P21/06899/R3F on the council’s online planning site, developments.southglos.gov.uk/online-applications/
The Linking the Greens project started in January with work to strengthen the Newlands footbridge, which involved lane closures on the ring road.
The council spokesperson said the bridge strengthening work “to secure its long-term future” had now finished.
Next spring the parapets will be replaced, waterproofing work will be carried out and non-slip surfacing installed.
The spokesperson added: “We are also in the process of finalising designs to refurbish the pathway part of the bridge to improve pedestrian and cycling access – we plan to re-surface and widen the shared path.”
For more information on the Linking the Greens scheme, visit the website beta.southglos.gov.uk/linking-the-greens.