£2m funding to encourage sustainable transport

20 May 2019, 07:22

A cycle lane

Funding worth £2 million to encourage people to increase journeys made on foot, bikes and public transport has been announced by the Scottish Government.

Grants of between £5,000 and £50,000 for projects to increase sustainable journeys are available to apply for from the Government's active travel budget.

Applications for projects or ideas need to be match funded by public, community and third sector organisations.

Announcing the second round of funding for the scheme, Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson said: "The Smarter Choices Smarter Places Open Fund helps fund innovative ideas to encourage walking, cycling and sustainable travel.

"This is a fantastic opportunity to implement programmes aimed at cutting carbon emissions, improving air quality and making healthier, safer, active travel a more viable option for getting around.

"I'm proud that the Scottish Government has provided support to 87 projects across the country in the first year. Supported through Paths for All, the Open Fund provides a real opportunity to realise innovation in sustainable travel and supports smaller community organisations who are keen to contribute to the climate, active travel and health agendas."

Paths for All chief officer Ian Findlay added: "One of the best things about the Open Fund is how flexible it is, and this was reflected in the wide range of applicants and projects in the first year.

"These came from community groups, third and public sector organisations or a combination of all three working together. We were also heartened to see such creativity behind applications which all aimed to change people's everyday travel behaviour.

"Creating opportunities for more people to walk and cycle for everyday short trips and choosing sustainable options for longer journeys is not only beneficial to health and wellbeing, it also helps reduce environmental impacts, inequalities and creates safer, robust communities where people feel more connected to where they live.

"With the launch of the Open Fund 2019-20 and £2 million of grants available once more, there's so much potential to support many more projects which will help create a happier, healthier Scotland."