PLANS to support active travel in Glasgow have been backed with an £8.6million cash award.
The award will go towards a range of measures that include building more active travel infrastructure across the city, expanding the city’s bike hire network, improving crossing facilities for the visually impaired and developing residents’ cycling skills.
The money comes from three funding schemes backed by the Scottish Government through Transport Scotland: the Active Travel Transformation Fund (ATTF), Cycling, Walking and Safer Routes (CWSR) and Smarter Choices, Smarter Places (SSCP).
Around £4million will go to three active travel infrastructure projects: Connecting Battlefield, North East Active Travel Route and the Pitt Street Active Travel Link, which is part of the Holland Street Avenue.
The schemes were selected as they are considered ‘construction ready’ and can support the national commitment for a rapid, generational shift to active travel across Scotland.
A further £4million will be allocated for variety of projects, including upgrades to traffic signals to support visually impaired road users, installation of new Nextbike hire stations and school bike shelters as well as cycle activated signage that helps to improve safety for cyclists at junctions.
And nearly £570,000 will support groups and individuals to develop their riding and cycle maintenance skills while also securing access to bicycles and e-cargo bikes. Funding will also go towards promoting cycling and public transport as viable alternatives to car use.
Councillor Angus Millar, City Convener for Transport, said the money was a clear vote of confidence in Glasgow’s effort to support walking, wheeling and cycling across the city.
He said: “These funding awards are fantastic news for active travel in Glasgow. We want to create a roads network that encourages walking, wheeling and cycling across the city and it’s great to see our plans being endorsed by the Scottish Government in this way.
“The Active Travel Transformation Fund has focused on ready-to-go projects and I am very pleased the effort we are putting into the designs for new infrastructure is paying off.
“Connecting Battlefield, the North East Active Travel Route and the Pitt Street Link will all make vital connections to other routes that will ensure it is easier to get about Glasgow by walking, wheeling or cycling.
“As more and more safer, segregated routes begin to link together across the city we will see the shift to active travel that is crucial to our efforts to reduce the use of vehicles driven by fossil fuels.
“Money from the Cycling Walking Safer Routes fund will also go to range of projects that will support active travel and road safety. We will ensure a significant percentage of this award will go towards upgrading junctions and crossings in the city centre and other parts of the city in support of visually impaired road users.”
The Scottish Government’s Minister for Active Travel, Patrick Harvie, added: “We’ve worked closely with local authorities to ensure this new approach through our £20 million Active Travel Transformation Fund works for them — making it easier to deliver more ambitious infrastructure projects faster than ever before.
“Later this summer, Scotland will be the cycling centre of the world with the first ever cycling world championships being hosted here. I want to make sure that the excitement around those elite events is matched by our ambition for everyday walking, wheeling and cycling.
“That is why I am just as excited about what we can do to deliver more safe, segregated and accessible infrastructure and make it easier for more people to do so.”