The Scottish government has announced that up to £51m is available for walking and cycling infrastructure in 2019/20. The funding has been allocated through the Scottish government’s active travel budget and will be match funded through applications to the Places for Everyone infrastructure programme, which is administered on behalf of Transport Scotland by Sustrans Scotland.
Sustrans has received project proposals from 30 local authorities for segregated paths, improvements to the public realm and projects intended to make Scotland’s towns and cities safer and friendlier places to live, work and spend time in. The successful projects will be announced in the coming months.
Michael Matheson, Scottish cabinet secretary for transport, infrastructure and connectivity, said: “Last year we doubled the active travel budget from £39m to £80m and we have maintained this record funding again this year to increase the speed of change in the number of people walking and cycling and to develop an active nation. While we are unlikely to reach 10% of all journeys made by bike by 2020, our ambitious push has led to good results in some areas, with Edinburgh now seeing rates of cycling at 9.8%.
“Infrastructure is key and I’m delighted that a record sum of money, £51m prior to match funding, will be invested into Scotland’s communities through the Places For Everyone programme. I look forward to seeing the scale of ambition demonstrated by Scotland’s local authorities when the announcement is made in the coming months.”
John Lauder, national director, Sustrans Scotland, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland, welcomed the announcement and said: “We have seen real ambition in the applications from local authorities and other stakeholders for our new Places for Everyone infrastructure funding programme, which allows recipients of funding to double their budgets by matching their funding with Transport Scotland’s funds. This increased funding means that local authorities and other stakeholders such as community development trusts can make it easier for people to walk, cycle and wheel by delivering safe, well designed, high quality infrastructure.”