MEMBERS of the public are being invited to walk the route of the long-awaited Porthmadog bypass before it opens to traffic.
The 5.3km highway will open to pedestrians on Sunday, September 25 for one day only.
Both adults and children are invited to walk at their own pace. The event will be open at either end from Porthmadog and Minffordd roundabouts, with only the 4km stretch between the roundabouts available for walkers to use.
Among those looking forward to the walk are members of Porthmadog Rotary Club, who hope to boost their organisation’s funds through a voluntary collection for charity on the day.
Club secretary Richard Harrison said: “It will not be a sponsored walk. However, our members will have collection buckets and anyone who wishes to can donate to our good causes.”
The £35m Porthmadog, Minffordd and Tremadog bypass is being built for the Welsh Government by a joint venture partnership of Balfour Beatty and Jones Bros Civil Engineering UK.
Project manager Wyn Daniels said: “We decided to open the bypass up to pedestrians so they can explore and experience the route before it opens to vehicles.
“It’s our way of saying thank you to the local community for its support during the construction.
“The fact that the Rotary Club is going to be able to use the opportunity to make a voluntary collection in aid of local charities is an added benefit.”
A number of construction workers from the bypass partnership are also aiming to join in the walk.
The new highway includes three roundabouts and eight new bridges, including a landmark three-span viaduct over the Glaslyn estuary, from which walkers will be able to enjoy a panoramic view of the surrounding countryside.
Work on the new road is progressing well and the joint venture partnership is confident of completing construction well before the end of the year.
The road will be open to the public from 10am – 4pm on September 25. Participants are asked to arrive no later than 3pm so they can complete the walk by 4pm.
There will be a hog roast at each end of the section of highway and bottled water will be available.
Parking spaces will be available both at the bypass construction team’s main compound at Stryd Fawr, opposite Porthmadog Fire Station, and at Snowdonia Business Park in Minffordd.