Benefits of Greenways
Greenways can make a huge difference to our daily lives by providing the opportunity to enjoy safe and easy access to fresh air and exercise, encouraging more people to journey by foot or bicycle, more children to walk or cycle to school, and by providing a vital leisure resource for local people and visitors alike. As a quick summary they:
- provide safe, traffic-free routes
- promote physical and mental health and well-being
- deliver access and connectivity for communities to enjoy and appreciate the environment
- support climate change adoption plans
- create green infrastructure for use by both locals and visitors.
But there are other, perhaps less obvious, benefits to having a national trail near to your home.
Greenways create jobs; we know this from other similar projects. From cycle hire to service jobs in the food and construction sectors, the invigoration of an area by developing a trail creates sustainable employment opportunities.
Greenways improve quality of life for everyone; by cleaning and making previous unused areas accessible they help get rid of dereliction and antisocial behaviour. Making an area a nice place to visit makes it a nice place to live.
Greenways create business opportunities. The increase in economic activity that a greenway brings creates opportunities for enterprise. Hotels reopen, and guesthouse accommodation is revived. Farmers in Northumberland were some of the biggest beneficiaries of the Hadrians’s Wall Path; many of them turned old stone sheds into camping barns and are earning significant income from these enterprises.
Greenways increase property values. Experience shows that property values tend to increase when a greenway is developed, and it is common to see property advertised in relation to its distance from such infrastructure.