12 Feb Government Pledge Large Investment into New Transport Links
The government is set to pledge £5bn over the next five years to expand and invest the bus and cycling network in England. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said, “the extra money will provide more frequent services and simpler, more affordable fares.”
But Labour has blamed the Prime Minister of refusing to actually reverse the “£645m-a-year cuts to bus budgets, causing thousands of routes to be axed”.
The announcement follows news that the government is set to give the go-ahead to the HS2 project, and only a few days ago, it was announced that a town in England would receive a £50m fund, to implement an all-electric bus.
It said many more bus routes would become “turn up and go” services, like those in London.
In addition to improving frequency and fares, the PM said the £5bn of funding will go towards new priority routes for buses and 4,000 “zero-emission buses” in England and Wales.
Both the cycling and bus schemes are the work of Andrew Gilligan, the former journalist now at Number 10. There had been expectations that he was planning more ambitious cycling provisions.
The £1bn a year funding for the bus and cycling plan is expected to be funded predominantly from extra borrowing.
On cycling, Mr Johnson is expected to promise to create 250 miles of new cycle paths and plans to make cycling safer in towns by expanding projects, dubbed “mini Holland” schemes.
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