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Government tells councils to show more ambition with cycling plans

Unambitious councils given just a fraction of what they bid for

The Department for Transport (DfT) has written to councils informing them it wants to see “an even higher level of ambition” when it comes to proposals for emergency active travel measures. Announcing a first tranche of funding yesterday, it said authorities had been given 100%, 75%, 50% or 25% of their respective bids, “based on the extent to which they aligned with the criteria.”

With public transport capacity currently severely limited due to the coronavirus crisis, the Government fears that without large numbers switching to active travel, towns and cities’ roads will grind to a halt.

New guidance for local authorities therefore demands that more space be provided for walking and cycling.

A £225m Emergency Active Travel Fund has been set up to help councils in England outside London create pop-up bike lanes and other measures.

Writing to councils to confirm the allocations for a first tranche of funding, the DfT said: “All proposals were assessed against key criteria, with authorities receiving either 100%, 75%, 50% or 25% of their allocations based on the extent to which they aligned with the criteria.

“In some cases, authorities have been given more than their indicative allocations where their proposals were particularly strong.

“Where authorities have received less than their indicative allocations, this is due to their proposals being less aligned with the objectives of the fund than those of other authorities.”

In a pointed and unambiguous message about the standard of plans put forward, the DfT adds: “We have to convey from ministers that they would like to see proposals of an even higher level of ambition for tranche two.”

Alex has written for more cricket publications than the rest of the team combined. Despite the apparent evidence of this picture, he doesn't especially like cake.

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