Cycle path to be completed this week

chestnut avenue east

The shared use cycleway on Chesnut Avenue is finally due to be completed this week – months after contractors abandoned work on it.

Eastleigh Local Area Committee had approved the £190k – with the majority of the funding to come from Hampshire County Council early last year but local resident Tiny Frith told Eastleigh News that contractors had last worked on the site in September leaving it in an unfinished and unsatisfactory state.

The footpath and cycleway on the Southside of Chestnut Avenue – between Magpie Lane up to the Cricks pub- had received just the base level and had not been top dressed,leaving an uneven and rough surface with protruding kerbstones and manhole covers.

One stretch was left with no tarmac at all, just base gravel where contractors had run out of the black sticky stuff.

However County Councillor Alan Broadhurst was able to explain the reason for the delay:

“The problem was caused by Scottish and Southern Energy Contracting (SSEC) who needed to move/supply new lighting columns and they have only just installed the new ones. As they own the cables etc. and have the street lighting PFI contract for the whole of the County we had to wait for them to complete the work.”

“ Cllrs. Steve Sollitt, Paul Bicknell and myself have all chased this several times since last September!!”

“Obviously neither the Borough nor County Councils wanted to lay a new surface only for it to be dug up within a few weeks hence the delay.”

“The good news is that the path is scheduled to be surfaced next Thursday and Friday”

Chestnut avenue west2

Not everyone was pleased with the explanation. Local issues campaigner Sam Snook – who is standing in Eastleigh South as an Independent- told Eastleigh News.

“When a contractor leaves the site-he must make sure the area is safe.

“In this case they failed to make safe for public use”

Mr Snook says he plans to complain to the Council.

Photo: ©stephen slominski

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