A new lane for the cycle on Thornton Road and blocking off some parts of the road in Kirkgate in Shipley to cars are two steps which can be introduced if Bradford gets expected £2.1 million packages for boosting ‘active travel’.
The government had announced in summer this year that West Yorkshire could get £12.5 million cash that will enable local authorities to promote more people to walk and travel by cycle.
The announcement was in response to the rising coronavirus cases and limitations on car travel.
The first part of funding had to be spent by the last week of October, and Bradford witnessed the launch of new cycle lanes on Hall Ings, Manchester Road, and Wakefield Road. It also saw the closure of Shay Lane in Heaton to cars.
The second part of funding worth £10 million was expected in September, however, the Department for Transport has only confirmed that notice on whether the recommended schemes meet government benchmarks, and will receive funding, will come shortly.
This £10 million funding, which can only be used for active travel projects, will be examined by members of West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s Investment Committee at a meeting on Thursday afternoon.
Members will be told that this funding will be divided
– Bradford: £2,131,555
– Calderdale: £101,172
– Kirklees: £1,983,983
– Leeds: £3,025,500
– Wakefield: £1,423,243
West Yorkshire Combined Authority will receive £1,387,439 for ‘delivery of behaviour change’ across the province. This would have to be spent by March, with all the recommended projects delivered by that date.
A report to the committee gives more details of what the money will be spent on if it is received.
A letter to the authority from Grant Shapps said the funding was dependent on Councils demonstrating ‘genuine plans to consult their local communities and embrace good design principles.’
A report to the Committee stated, “To date, DfT has not provided any indications that there are concerns with delivery in our region. Given West Yorkshire partners’ track record of delivery and the positive impacts achieved to date for active travel, we hope that our application is successful in securing 100 per cent of the indicative allocation that we applied for.”
Schemes proposed for the second part of the funding in Bradford include:
– South Bradford cycle routes, linking Holme Wood, Dudley Hill and Bowling with Thornbury through a connection to the existing Leeds Bradford Cycle Superhighway, and to the city centre
– A segregated cycle route along Thornton Road – connecting Crossley Hall and Girlington to the city centre
– ‘Expansion and enhancement’ of the pop up/cycle route programme introduced in the first wave of funding
– The creation of a “bus gate” on Kirkgate, Shipley, restricting traffic whilst allowing bus and cycle access on Kirkgate, supporting wider plans to make Shipley Market Place a healthier, people-friendly area
– Introduction of ‘schools streets’ which would see roads around schools closed to traffic at drop off and pick up times.