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25 June 2010

Cycling goes up a gear

A £3.9 million plan to increase cycling numbers and have 10 per cent of all journeys by bike by 2020 was unveiled today.

The Cycling Action Plan for Scotland aims to expand cycle routes across the country and improve cycle training in schools.

The plan:
  • £2.5 million investment in cycling infrastructure, such as new paths
  • £150,000 loan support scheme to help business improve workplace cycling facilities
  • £500,000 to Glasgow City Council for its Connect2 project, allowing cyclists to travel between the city centre, the Clyde riverside promenades, Kelvingrove Park and the West End free of traffic
  • £300,000 on child cycle training
Transport Minister Stewart Stevenson published the plan while opening a newly completed section of the National Cycle Network between Kincardine and Culross in Fife.

He said:

"Scotland has the toughest climate change legislation anywhere in the world and as our climate change delivery plan made clear we need to decarbonise almost all road transport by 2050. This means persuading more motorists to get out of their cars and getting more people to cycle - that's why we have set the challenging target for 2020 that 10 per cent of all journeys taken in Scotland be made by bike.

"As a result of our cycling plan almost £4 million will go into building new cycle routes and improving cycle training. I am confident that as we improve the delivery of cycle training in our schools and construct new cycle routes like the one I've opened today in Fife that we will achieve our 2020 vision.

"The Scottish Government is making a record £31 million investment in sustainable and active travel this year. This includes the 10 million pounds we are investing, along with five million pounds from local authorities, over three years to create seven sustainable travel demonstration communities which will showcase a range of sustainable transport initiatives, from Dumfries to Kirkwall."

John Lauder, Scotland's National Director for the sustainable transport charity Sustrans, said:

"I welcome the launch of CAPS and its ambitious vision and practical monitoring programme. Its target of a ten per cent modal share for cycling is completely achieveable and, most importantly, vital if we are to address issues such as health and energy depletion. But such targets need financial commitment and we are pleased to hear that funding has been allocated to make this aspiration a reality. We look forward to seeing more such leadership in future years and hope others will follow this example".

Ian Aitken, Chief Executive of Cycling Scotland, commented:

"We welcome the publication of the Cycling Action Plan in Bike Week, and are particularly pleased to see the prioritisation of cycle training in schools across Scotland. The publication of CAPS is the first part of the process in making our cities, towns and villages more cycle friendly and our nation healthier and fitter."

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