Leeds and Manchester are each bidding for up to £20 million in Cycle City Ambition funding from the Department for Transport, with the deadline for bids being next Tuesday, 30 April – but they will be competing with other cities throughout England for a share of the £30 million on offer.
According to the Yorkshire Evening Post, Leeds, which is preparing to host the Grand Départ of next year’s Tour de France, plans to create what is described as an “east-west super cycleway” across the city and extending to Bradford.
Plans, which also envisage more cycling infrastructure within Leeds city centre as well as resurfacing of the Leeds & Liverpool canal towpath, are due to be outlined to an executive board meeting of Metro, the passenger transport authority for the West Yorkshire region, today.
Across the Pennines, Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) says that if its bid is successful, it will spend most of the money on “a series of more continental-style, largely segregated, cycle routes within the heart of the conurbation, together with the delivery of a number of cycle and ride stations.
It adds that “to get more people on their bikes using these new facilities, we’ll deliver a programme of promotion and engagement designed to trigger a generational shift that has the potential to ‘mainstream’ cycling.”
TfGM is asking cyclists to show their support for its aim to transform levels of cycling in Manchester and the surrounding areas for which it is responsible by clicking a button on the dedicated Velocity page of its website.
Birmingham, Bristol, Norwich and Nottingham are among other ciies in England bidding for Cycle City Ambition funding under the initiative announced by transport minister Norman Baker in January.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.