Later today the Department for Transport will reveal the full details of its much-trumpeted Local Sustainable Transport Fund. This is a £560m fund to be split over four years and to be open to bids from councils only. [UPDATE: report is now online. It includes £11m set aside for Bikeability.]
The bidding criteria will reveal whether trunk road schemes will get cash: some councils have been looking to gain cash for such schemes by billing them as ‘green’ schemes that will divert traffic from bottlenecks. It’s unlikely such schemes will be funded from this particular scheme but many other motorised projects will bid for cash.
In a press statement, the Department for Transport highlighted the Wheels to Work scheme in the Yorkshire Dales which offers apprentices and trainees the loan motorcycles which helps them take up local job offers where they need transport.
The DfT also highlighted a carshare scheme in Devon.
Local transport minister Norman Baker said: "A good transport system is vital in our efforts to deliver two key Government priorities: to help grow the economy and to reduce carbon emissions.
"Investment in local sustainable transport can deliver quick gains with both objectives, which is why, even in these difficult financial times, we are providing an unprecedented £560 million to take this agenda forward.
"We are clear you can have your green cake and eat it. Money invested wisely in local transport initiatives can both help the economy and cut carbon. It’s a win-win for local people and for the country as a whole."
Baker told the Financial Times that there would be no cash for a comeback for Cycling England, the body that successfully promoted cycling.
“We think the best way to have accountability for these sorts of schemes is to make sure we don’t have an arm’s length body which places decision-making at a distance from ministers and which ministers can disown."