Press release

Funding boost for local authorities as government sets out transport strategy

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

£560 million funding for local sustainable transport projects to help create economic growth and reduce carbon emissions.

Local authorities are set to receive an unprecedented £560 million funding boost for sustainable transport projects to help create economic growth and reduce carbon emissions.

Full details of the Local Sustainable Transport Fund are published today in a government white paper ‘Creating growth, cutting carbon’ which aims to encourage greater use of public transport and more walking and cycling.

Among the aims of the strategy which sets out a vision for local solutions which will have a national impact are:

  • cutting red tape for councils while cutting carbon;
  • getting quick wins locally by investing in smaller scale schemes to help create jobs
  • giving local people more power over initiating innovative transport schemes in their own areas to better meet local needs e.g. supporting schemes like ‘Wheels to Work’ in North Yorkshire and Devon which gives people in rural communities access to personal transport to get to work or training.

Regional and Local Transport Minister, Norman Baker, said:

A good transport system is vital in our efforts to deliver 2 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.

I look forward to working with local authorities and others as we take on this challenge and believe together we can make genuinely sustainable transport a reality for everyone.

Key measures in the white paper include:

  • a £560 million Local Sustainable Transport Fund to address the urgent challenges of building economic growth and tackling climate change, as well as delivering cleaner environments, improved safety and increased levels of physical activity
  • a commitment to work with the transport industry to support the development of e-purses and other technology related to smart ticketing; and to deliver, with operators and public sector bodies, the infrastructure to enable most local public transport journeys to be undertaken using smart ticketing by December 2014
  • further incentivising integrated ticketing and joining up the dots to deliver easier end-to-end journeys using public transport
  • a reduction in the bureaucratic burdens on local authorities by:

    • simplifying access to transport funding
    • allowing councils to decide on road classifications without going; through central government
    • simplifying the regulations for introducing new road signs
    • highlighting the importance of the national standard for cycle training and specific funding for Bikeability and the 2011 to 2012 cycle journey planner to encourage cycling

The government also announced today that £11 million from the fund will be spent on Bikeability - cycling proficiency for the 21st century - helping 275,000 10 to 11 year olds benefit from ‘on road’ cycle training. This funding will support a specific objective of the white paper to increase the number of people who use cycling as a mode of transport.

The Local Sustainable Transport Fund is now 1 of just 4 grant streams for local transport funding. This is part of the radical simplification and reform of local transport funding to support the localism agenda, reducing the number of funding streams from nearly 30 to just 4.

Notes to editors

The government white paper ‘Creating growth, cutting carbon

The Local sustainable transport fund guidance is available.

As announced in the government’s comprehensive spending review in October 2010 the number of funding streams for local transport will be moving from 26 grant streams to 4 from 2011 to 2012. These are:

  • a local sustainable transport fund (capital and revenue)
  • major schemes (capital)
  • block funding for highways maintenance (capital)
  • block funding for small transport improvement schemes (capital)

£11 million for Bikeability will go to local authorities and School Sports Partnerships

In addition to this £11 million award funds will also be made available for Bikeability training for the remainder of the Parliament. During 2011 we will be looking at how we can best fund and deliver Bikeability training over the following 3 years.

Press enquiries: 020 7944 3118
Out of hours: 020 7944 4292
Public enquiries: 0300 330 3000