Five cycling and walking projects in Scotland to share £60 million in funding

News comes as consultation launched on country's new National Transport Strategy...

Five major cycling and walking projects in Scotland are to share £60 million in funding under the Sustrans Scotland’s Places For Everyone Scheme, which is funded by Transport Scotland.

Two schemes in Glasgow get a combined £22.85 million in funding, while the other three successful bids see Edinburgh receive £20.32 million, Arbroath £6.92 million and Perth £6.45 million, with match funding also being provided by the relevant local authorities.

One of the projects in Glasgow is the Yorkhill and Kelvingrove Cycling Village, a project set up by a community group which receives £6.5 million, with match funding from Glasgow City Council taking the total investment to £13 million.

Another project in Scotland’s largest city will included segregated cycle lanes linking Dennistoun, Port Dundas and Lauriston to the city centre and will also connect with the Avenues cycleways currently being developed there.

In Edinburgh, the money will helped fund the George Street and New Town public realm design project which aims to transform the area for cyclists and pedestrians.

Meanwhile, in Perth and Arbroath, segregated cycleways and improvements for people on foot will be undertaken on roads that are currently dual carriageways.

The funding was announced in Perth yesterday by Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson as he launched a consultation on the country’s new National Transport Strategy.

He said: “The National Transport Strategy sets a clear direction for a future where we have a sustainable, inclusive and accessible transport system that helps deliver a healthier, fairer and more prosperous Scotland.

“We know cycling, walking, use of public transport and shared transport options all need to be more affordable, accessible and attractive if we are to make this vision a reality. The Strategy is being launched alongside the allocation of almost £60 million for five new active travel projects, underlining the added benefits that sustainable transport can bring.

“We all have a stake in our transport system as we choose how we want to travel. I would encourage everyone with an interest to consider the new Strategy and to join the conversation.

“The consultation is available online and we will also be coming out to communities across rural, island and urban locations during the next 12 weeks where it would be great to hear as many views as possible.”

Grace Martin, Sustrans Scotland Director, commented: “We are delighted to announce the projects that will be supported by Sustrans’ Places for Everyone programme, funded by Transport Scotland. Five large scale projects that will make a real difference to the residents of Perth, Glasgow, Edinburgh and Arbroath.

“Working in partnership with the Sustrans Places for Everyone programme provides support and expertise through all stages, from concept and design to delivery and construction. The programme helps to connect communities and create liveable towns and cities.  By putting people back in the heart of places – whether in cities or smaller towns, Places for Everyone makes it easier for people of all ages and abilities to travel actively and to create healthier, happier places to live, work and play.

“We’re excited by the new National Transport Strategy designed to make sure transport helps Scotland to meet its priorities for prosperity, reducing inequality, tackling climate change and healthier people. Sustrans Scotland look forward to working with our partners to deliver these goals by helping more people to walk, cycle and wheel.”

The charity Cycling UK welcomed news of the funding but urged that money also be provided to enable projects that were the subject of unsuccessful bids to be realised, highlighting that the £60 million funding is less than the cost of turning two miles of the A9 Perth-Inverness trunk road into a dual carriageway.

Jim Densham, the charity’s Campaigns and Policy Manager for Scotland, commented: “It’s fantastic that five schemes have won funding today to provide much needed space for people to safely walk and cycle around our towns and cities.

“We now call on the government to urgently further develop and take forward the schemes not funded today, so that more communities can benefit.

“With a Climate Emergency declared in Scotland, and with walking and cycling recognised as a key solution to the climate challenge, all of these projects and more are needed to meet the government’s vision of an active nation,” he added.

Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.