Discover the Benefits of Active Travel in Belfast

Translink has partnered with Belfast City Council and Sustrans to promote cycling and walking alongside the use of public transport as work intensifies on the new world class Grand Central Station opening this autumn.

 With the recent closure of Great Victoria Street rail station and work on the new public realm area around the station ramps up, Translink is collaborating with its partners to get more people choosing healthier, smarter active travel modes to start the city’s transformation towards a cleaner, greener environment for all.

 Gemma McMurray, Route Manager Southern Area, Translink explained, “This partnership is a great opportunity for us all to reconsider our travel habits and make the change – even one day a week – choosing more sustainable travel modes will help create a smarter, more accessible city with less reliance on private cars.”

“The closure of Great Victoria Street will mean passengers will need to use one of the other city train stations.  Combining this journey with walking and cycling will be a great way to boost physical and mental wellbeing and a step towards creating a better environment for all.  In addition, passengers can also easily use regular passing Metro and Glider services to interchange between stations.

 “With the recent launch of the Active Travel Challenge there has never been a better time to make the switch away from private car to reimagine a cleaner, vibrant and better-connected city for all, more details at,” Gemma concluded.

 Belfast City Council is supporting a range of active travel measures across the city centre as part of work to revitalise the city’s core. It also operates 552 Belfast Bikes at 59 docking stations, many of which are conveniently located near the main Belfast rail stations at Lanyon Place, Botanic, City Hospital and York Street station.

“Creating a greener city centre which welcomes pedestrians and cyclists is a key goal for us, so we’ve put measures in place to make walking, wheeling and cycling a more viable option for commuters and visitors,” said Deputy Lord Mayor of Belfast, Councillor Áine Groogan.

“Our Active Travel Hub at Cathedral Gardens, just beside the Ulster University campus, has been extended until the end of June, with lots of free events and activities on offer with Sustrans, including the chance to try e-bikes. We’re also progressing plans for more covered cycle stands and additional free, secure cycle parking, like our first unit at CastleCourt which is open 24/7, six days a week. Our Belfast Bikes offer another low-cost, convenient, and eco-friendly option, while investment into the Connswater and Forth Meadow Community Greenways has created low or no-traffic corridors into the city centre, easily accessible by bike or on foot.”

Sustrans is an advocate of the benefits of active travel. “Active travel offers many health benefits, including improved cardiovascular health, reduced stress levels, and increased overall well-being,” says Claire Pollock, Head of Sustrans in Northern Ireland. “Walking, wheeling and cycling are excellent ways to incorporate physical activity into your daily routine, providing a sustainable and enjoyable alternative.”

 The Active Travel Challenge is a joint initiative between Sustrans, Translink, the Department for Infrastructure, Public Health Agency (PHA), Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, and Belfast City Council. The free challenge offers lots of prizes and takes place for the entire month of June. It is open to individuals of all ages and organisations of any size, to encourage them to switch their usual routine and try walking, cycling, or taking public transport for a more active and greener way to travel. 

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