£266M TRANSPORT BOOST FOR GREEN GROWTH AND INFRASTRUCTURE







Published by Gerald Ferreira Date: June 28, 2012
Categories: General News

Towns and cities across England are set to benefit from major transport schemes boosting green growth, Transport Minister Norman Baker announced today.

The funding forms the third allocation from the Local Sustainable Transport Fund. 12 major projects have won funding totalling £225 million, while 15 smaller schemes are receiving a total of £41 million from the Department for Transport. This includes an additional £40 million on top of the previously- announced £560m funding available under the scheme.

This central funding will be matched by a further £194 million funding from local authorities and businesses, bringing the total value of the schemes to £460 million. Since the Local Sustainable Transport Fund was created following the General Election of 2010, almost a hundred schemes have benefitted from more than £1 billion.

The schemes announced today are led by 24 local authorities, with many more as partners and cover eight regions.

Each of the projects will provide a transport package that delivers carbon savings and economic growth, and in many cases will see major investment in local transport infrastructure.

The successful schemes include a variety of measures including improving sustainable transport options for commuters, encouraging parents and children to walk to school, creating public transport hubs and building better cycling infrastructure.

Norman Baker said:

“The schemes we are funding will improve life for millions of people in towns and cities up and down the country and show that cutting carbon and boosting economic growth go hand-in-hand.

“Investing in these schemes shows that we are serious about funding infrastructure where there is a clear business case for doing so. The money we are putting into these projects will unlock much greater economic benefits for communities as well as improving the environment – it’s a win-win.”

The schemes to be funded include:

  • Reading will see a real boost for bikes, including a London-style cycle hire scheme and a new state-of-the-art pedestrian and cycle bridge crossing the Thames. There will also be new park-and-ride schemes and improvements to existing schemes to help commuters access key employment hubs.
  • Merseyside will see a project providing better public transport and cycle infrastructure, linking areas of deprivation with areas of employment. The scheme will include real-time travel information and extra services for bus users as well as station improvements on the local rail network.
  • Nottingham will see its smartcard scheme expanded to cover all of the city’s buses, trams and trains with more outlets offering top up services for the cards. The funding will also cover cycle storage and hire schemes, as well as a network of local travel hubs set up to address the specific travel needs of different communities.

A full list of the successful bids can be found below. All the schemes for which funding has been confirmed today are also receiving significant contributions from the local council or the private sector.

These local schemes will bring national benefits. In addition to supporting economic growth, enabling and encouraging people to make more sustainable travel choices, the projects will reduce delays on the roads in urban areas, which cost the economy around £11 billion a year. These projects will help tackle problems such as poor air quality, and improved cycling and walking infrastructure will help to improve the health of the nation.