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£440m to boost green transport

A total of £440 million is to be spent on green transport, the Government has announced.

The 44 new sustainable transport schemes will include £64 million investment from the Government, said transport minister Baroness Kramer.

The schemes chosen will bring environmental, health and economic benefits to communities across England.

The range of schemes will include improved infrastructure for cyclists and pedestrians, better bus journeys and new and upgraded transport interchanges allowing people to easily switch from one mode of transport to another.

The Department for Transport is providing £64 million towards the schemes in the latest round of its Local Sustainable Transport Fund, with Local Enterprise Partnerships investing more than £100 million of the funding they received earlier this week as part of the Local Growth Fund.

Further match funding will take the value of the package to more than £440 million.

Baroness Kramer said: “We want more people to choose to travel in a way that cuts congestion and carbon, delivering economic and environmental benefits.

“This funding will make that choice easier for millions of people across the country, delivering new sustainable transport schemes throughout England.”

To be considered for funding, the schemes had to demonstrate how they would boost economic growth, reduce carbon emissions, improve air quality and encourage higher levels of cycling and walking to improve public health.

The Government said the funding announced today is good news for cycling, with all the schemes including measures to get people on their bikes such as cycle hire, maintenance and cycle hubs.

This complements the infrastructure schemes funded through the Local Growth Fund, including cycle networks across the country.

Today’s Government funding is in addition to the £3 billion being provided for transport through the Local Growth Fund, which included £600 million for sustainable transport and £700 million for packages that benefit all road users.

Campaign for Better Transport (CBT) welcomed the Government’s announcement.

James MacColl, head of campaigns for the CBT said: “As Monday’s Growth Deals announcement showed, the process of allocating funds for local projects through Local Enterprise Partnerships’ (LEPs) bids to the Local Growth Fund heavily favours road building projects at the expense of spending on transport which tackles car dependency and improves public transport, cycling and walking.

“While the LEPs can learn from the Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF) projects to develop better bids in future, the only way to ensure good value revenue and capital spending on local transport projects is to extend and expand the LSTF.”

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