Work to start on pedestrian and cycle access to three Fife recycling centres

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Work to provide pedestrian and cyclist access at three of Fife’s household waste recycling centres is to be carried out - subject to funding being identified.

Councillors on the region’s environment and protective services sub committee have asked officers to source the £32,000 it will cost to provide access gates, internal walkways and cycle parking at Kirkcaldy, Lochgelly and Dalgety Bay, while detailed design work to provide appropriate safe pedestrian access at sites at St Andrews and Methil will similarly be progressed.

The decisions came after the committee received an update on the Kingdom’s household waste recycling centres, where the need to pre-book slots was removed - with the exception of Ladybank - on October 1.

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An 80% increase in traffic to the sites was recorded over a 12-week period from October 1 to December 31, but tonnage remained roughly the same, suggesting people are making more frequent visits with smaller volumes of material, rather than waiting until the householder has a full load to be deposited.

Kirkacldy Recycling Centre  (Pic: Fife Photo Agency)Kirkacldy Recycling Centre  (Pic: Fife Photo Agency)
Kirkacldy Recycling Centre (Pic: Fife Photo Agency)
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With that in mind, efforts to try and cut the number of car journeys to and from the sites are being looked at - such as allowing pedestrian and cyclist access.

Ken Gourlay, head of assets, transportation and environment, said pedestrian and cyclist access was initially deemed to be possible at Cupar, Dalgety Bay, Kirkcaldy, Lochgelly, Methil and St Andrews, but confirmed that Cupar has since been ruled out due to the small size of the centre.

“The sites at St Andrews and Methil would require the formation of a safe pedestrian access external to the site, in order to gain access via a pedestrian slip gate,” he added.

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“In the case of Methil, a formal crossing may be required across the busy Steelworks Brae as there is no other means of access from the pavement on the opposite side of the road to the site.

“Views are being sought from roads and transportation services on this matter.

“Similarly, there is no pavement access up to the St Andrews site from Bobby Jones Place and again a safe access solution needs to be found.

“The sites at Dalgety Bay, Lochgelly and Kirkcaldy are all accessible via existing pavements and would require internal works, along with the provision of a slip gate, to ensure there is a safe walkway from the entrance to the site round to the containers and back again.”

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Mr Gourlay went on to confirm that the remaining sites at Cowdenbeath, Dunfermline, Glenrothes, Ladybank and Pitenweem are all not suitable for pedestrian access or cyclist access due to their location and layout.

The booking system was retained at Ladybank due to issues experienced by public and commercial vehicles trying to access the single site entrance there.

Council officials have since looked at the feasibility of creating a suitable road for dedicated access to the centre which would remove the need for the booking system for cars.

However, the indicative cost is in the region of £625,000, and further work to identify potential funding to take that forward will be needed.

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