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Roads to Nowhere

Discredited road schemes must not prevail over smart, sustainable travel choices

4 July 2014

Responding to the Government’s Growth Deals announcement, Campaign for Better Transport welcomed the funding for sustainable transport projects but said that the deals were still supporting damaging road schemes.

James MacColl, head of campaigns, Campaign for Better Transport, said

“Today’s announcement includes many good projects but motoring-orientated decision-making in some Local Enterprise Partnerships continues to put discredited road-building schemes ahead of the transport communities really want, which is joined up, accessible travel choices. Road developments declared unfit years ago are still threatening green space and clean air.”

Research published by Campaign for Better Transport and Sustrans last month [2] highlighted that while Local Enterprise Partnerships are keen to talk about sustainable transport in their Strategic Economic Plans, under half actually committed to investing in any strong walking, cycling or public transport schemes, while road and car-based schemes were heavily favoured.

James said

“We welcome investment such as the £200 million for bus schemes, and £18 million revamp of Manchester’s Metrolink, but it’s just not enough. Commitment to projects for new and widened roads has actually increased this year, from 65 percent [3] to 73 percent, leaving public transport, walking and cycling with an even smaller share of public funds... More public consultation, transparency and linking of rail, roads and local transport planning are needed if LEPs are to deliver transport that’s good for people and for our environment.  National government must provide support to prioritise smarter, sustainable transport planning.”

 

ENDS

For further information please contact Chloë Darlington, Communications Officer at Campaign for Better Transport, on 020 7566 6483 / 07984 773 468  or chloe.darlington@bettertransport.org.uk

 

Notes

1.    Campaign for Better Transport is the UK's leading authority on sustainable transport. We champion transport solutions that improve people's lives and reduce environmental damage. Our campaigns push innovative, practical policies at local and national levels. Campaign for Better Transport Charitable Trust is a registered charity (1101929).

2.    Strategic Economic Plans Review by Campaign for Better Transport and Sustrans: http://www.bettertransport.org.uk/%C2%A32bn-local-growth-plans-ignore-smarter-travel-choices

3.    Last year’s figure taken from Report on Local Transport Body plans 2013 by Campaign for Better Transport: http://www.bettertransport.org.uk/roads-nowhere/local-transport/local-transport-body-report

4.    Charts comparing local transport spending plans 2013 and 2014 – 2016 http://www.bettertransport.org.uk/sites/default/files/pictures/Local_Growth_Fund_spending_plans_2014.jpg