January 21 2017
While expressing support for much of the detail of the recently-refreshed Cycling Action Plan for Scotland (CAPS3), Cycling UK says that without more funding, the government will not hit its target of 10 per cent of journeys being made by bike by 2020.
Transport Scotland recently updated CAPS with a number of new initiatives, but Cycling UK says that this will not be enough.
The Scottish Government has committed to record levels of active travel investment, but this is set to remain at £39m a year until 2021.
Writing on the Cycling UK website, Sam Jones says that the 2017/18 draft transport budget puts active travel at 1.6 per cent of the overall total spend.
Cycling Scotland has recommended that levels of active travel funding be raised to a sustained 10 per cent of the transport budget. However, the Scottish Government’s position is: “… that levels of transport spend cannot simply be based on percentage allocations for each transport mode. The overall transport budget must reflect existing contractual requirements, planned maintenance and upgrades and it would be wrong to arbitrarily allocate definite amounts to any one mode.”
Jones says: “Put simply, despite some good initiatives and actions contained within CAPS3, there is not enough money to meet the Scottish Government’s vision of 10% of journeys by cycle.”
Cycling UK has suggested a series of actions that people can take to try and influence future funding.
These include working with the collaborative campaign We Walk, We Cycle, We Vote to demonstrate to local government that active travel is a priority for voters; emailing MSPs to ask for an increase in active travel investment before the 2017/18 transport budget is finalised in mid-February; responding to a survey on the renewal of the Transport Scotland National Strategy, highlighting the importance of increased investment; and writing to council candidates to ask them to commit to increased investment.