Localised congestion funding available

Extra funds are to be made available to implement localised congestion-reduction measures, the Department for Transport announced this week.

Eighteen million pounds has been made available for local authorities over the next three years to support planning for local demand management schemes where road pricing is a major element.

Transport Secretary Alastair Darling said the money would come from the Transport Innovation Fund (TIF), which is set to come on stream from 2008 and set to reach some £2.5 billion by 2014/15.

The DfT is looking for proposals which combine some form of demand management such as road pricing, with better public transport.

“We are asking local authorities to bid for development funding to support planning for local demand management schemes where pricing is a major element. We have set aside £18 million between 2005/06 and 2007/08 to support preliminary scheme development by local transport authorities.”

In addition, Mr Darling announced that government plans for distance based charging for lorries will be taken forward as part of wider plans on national road pricing.

“Our thinking on national road pricing has developed further. We are now taking forward work on a national system of road pricing, so it is right for us to take forward the plans for distance based lorry charging as part of the wider work on national road pricing – to work for a single, comprehensive, cost-effective system,” he said.

By David Hopkins

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