Following the announcement that the Scottish Government intends to allocate £3.4m from the active travel to fund to support the Spaces for People programme, Green Transport Spokesperson John Finnie has suggested more money for the programme should come from the roads budget.
The Spaces for People has successfully improved active travel infrastructure throughout Scotland on a temporary basis during the lockdown, but much of the funding raided from the active travel budget was intended to support permanent upgrades.
Welcoming the extra funds for Spaces for People, Mr Finnie nevertheless expressed his frustration that the much larger roads budget remained untouched.
The Scottish Government’s budget for 2020-21 allocated nearly £750m for motorways and trunk roads but only £85m for active travel.
Mr Finnie said: “While I welcome the commitment of extra funds to the Spaces for People Programme, which has no doubt been success, I am disappointed that money intended for long term improvements to our active travel is being spent on temporary measures. The roads budget is gargantuan compared to the active travel budget and only a fraction of its total could make a huge difference to Spaces for People. The Scottish Government has a chance here to back up its talk on active travel and stop treating it as second class next to cars.”