£148 Million Investment
The coalition government has pledged a total of £148 million to cycling safety to encourage a greater number of people to cycle as an alternative to driving. £77 million of the fund will be used to make cycling safer in cities by cutting red tape that prevents cycle-friendly road design and to promote changes to the way roads are built or altered. Prime Minister David Cameron, aims to increase cycling safety in the UK by saying: “This government wants to make it easier and safer for people who already cycle, as well as encouraging far more people to take it up and business, local government, developers, road users and the transport sector all have a role to play in helping to achieve this.”
Increase in Number of Cyclists in the Capital
Junction improvements and road-widening will be ‘cycle-proofed’ so that they can be negotiated confidently by the average cyclist. Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin, said: “We have seen a significant growth in the number of cyclists in London over the last few years. But cycling shouldn’t be confined to the capital.” This financial commitment to improving the nation’s cycling infrastructure is intended to put Britain on a level-footing with other European countries which are known for higher levels of cycling such as Germany, Denmark and the Netherlands.
An increase in British cyclists will reduce the number of cars on the roads. According to the government only 2% of trips in the UK are made by bike, compared with 14% in Germany and almost a third in the Netherlands. This is despite the fact that 43% of people own or have access to a bike in Britain and 38% of people could just as easily cycle for short trips than use a car. The government’s recent boost in funding to encourage trips to be made by bike rather than car, will lead to a reduction in the country’s air pollution levels if implemented effectively.
Air Quality Assessments of UK Highway Network
REC regularly undertakes detailed dispersion modelling of the highway network both in Britain and internationally. REC’s Air Quality Assessments, through utilising Air Quality monitoring results, ensures road traffic pollution is kept to a minimum and helps protect sensitive receptors such as schools, hospitals and residential areas from high pollution levels and associated health effects.