Green Assembly Member Caroline Russell has said that the government’s promised £2 billion to boost cycling and walking is not enough to meet the UK’s needs – and that it leaves London starkly underfunded.
Caroline compared London’s £25 million share of the funding to the £70 million requested by London boroughs, according to the Mayor’s walking and cycling commissioner.
The government also scuppered TfL’s plans to allocate £417 million to walking and cycling in 2020-21. TfL will now spend just £98 million.
She also said that, over the same five-year period, £27 billion will go on major roads.
While Caroline welcomed developments like new protected bike lanes and cycle training, the funding shortfall would not support the Government’s pro-biking rhetoric.
She said, ‘It’s great to see Government learning lessons from London’s progress on walking and cycling, and for the completely outdated guidance on designing bike lanes to be replaced. But if we are going to see a measurable change in the way people get around, the Government needs to find a lot more than £2 billion.’
The London Cycling Campaign has pointed out that a country like Holland has spent the equivalent of one billion pounds a year on cycling infrastructure “for decades – not just for one parliament, but for many years to come”. The Greens believe this is the kind of investment needed to bring about a true cycling revolution.