Proposed resurfacing of Core Path/NCN 196 between Rosewell and Auchendinny

Closed 5 Sep 2023

Opened 8 Aug 2023


In response to initial public feedback to proposed surfacing works of Core Path NCN 196 between Rosewell and Auchendinny, the Council is conducting a public consultation to collect views on the proposal.

National Cycle Network (NCN) route 196 runs between Penicuik and Haddington, with direct connections to NCN 1 (the UK’s core north-south active travel corridor) via Musselburgh and Edinburgh. The development of long-distance active travel networks is a key priority of Transport Scotland under the Strategic Transport Projects Review (STPR2). At the local level, the route forms part of Midlothian’s Core Path network, which aims to improve public access to key rights of way across the Council area.

As communities in Midlothian grow, there is an increasing need for safe, high-quality active travel routes linking local communities. Surrounding roads in the area have high levels of vehicular traffic, or very steep gradients through Roslin Glen. The NCN 196 is therefore a key link for active travel between Penicuik, Rosewell, and the rest of Midlothian, providing a safe link for those who travel without a car.

Sections of the NCN 196 path between Rosewell and Bonnyrigg and between Auchendinny and Penicuik already have a durable bound surface in place (tarmac). The Council is proposing to install a bound surface to the remaining section of path NCN 196 between Rosewell and Auchendinny to make this linking section accessible for a broad range of users. A bound surface will reduce difficulties currently encountered by wheeled users, and users with mobility difficulties, particularly in poor weather conditions.

The Council is proposing to surface the path to a width of 3 metres. As well as the option of a 3m wide tarmac path we are also asking for your views on a split width 3m path suitable for all users, consisting of 2m width of tarmac and 1m of alternative bound surface. This option would provide a 1m width strip offering a more flexible surface. Funding availability, procurement processes, and warm temperature requirements for laying mean that provision of the flexible surface cannot happen immediately. Should this option be chosen, 2m width of the current surface will be upgraded to tarmac, with the 1m flexible surface installed at a later date.

No new sections of pathway are proposed and works are not anticipated to take place outwith the current width of the pathway corridor. Resurfacing this section of pathway will ensure continuity across the full length of the path. Key drainage issues have been identified on the path, and localised drainage improvements are to be included as part of the proposed works, if approved.

Any approved pathway works are likely to involve a closure of the section between Rosewell and Auchendinny for a period of approximately six weeks, although this may be longer depending on the type of surface implemented. Where possible, the Council will minimise closure periods, and will aim to see phased reopenings to minimise disruption.

Why your views matter

The Council is seeking public feedback on the proposed resurfacing works, and on the temporary closure of the pathway outlined above. Some initial feedback to the council has indicated concerns with a bituminous (tarmac) path for some users and we are keen for wide ranging feedback to inform a finalised design for a potential surfaced path.

You will find FAQs with more details on page 1 of this survey. 

What happens next

Councillors will consider a report on the findings of the consultation before final decisions are agreed.


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