New money for cycling and walking

A £250 million emergency ‘active travel fund’ will help encourage cycling and walking through new infrastructure such as pop-up bike lanes, protected space for cyclists, wider pavements, safer junctions and cycle and bus-only roads.

The Government will fund and work with local authorities on the measures, with the aim of encouraging more people to walk or cycle to work to relieve pressure on public transport, during the coronavirus crisis.

It has also issued guidance for councils on reallocating road space for cyclists and pedestrians in response to COVID-19.

More details of an overall £2 billion package of support – which aims to double cycling and increase walking to work by 2025 – were expected as first went to press.

The LGA is making the case for long-term certainty of infrastructure funding to ensure a sustained increase in active and cleaner travel.

Cllr David Renard, the LGA’s Transport Spokesman, said: “Councils are leading local efforts to protect communities from coronavirus and will be central to the nation’s recovery.

“We are pleased the Government has announced measures to allow councils to help the country transition to the new way we will need to travel around, including to and from work.

“If we are to achieve a sustained increase in active and cleaner travel, councils need long-term certainty of infrastructure funding. Local control over infrastructure and public transport budgets would enable them to deliver the widespread improvements needed to promote more active travel.

“This will not only improve public health but will reduce congestion and pollution and enable the creation of safe and attractive public transport networks.”


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