Thank you for contacting me about cycling and walking.
With public transport capacity reduced to facilitate social distancing, cycling and walking will play a vital role in helping the country to get back to work.
Despite fewer people travelling overall during the COVID-19 crisis, there has been around a 100 per cent increase in weekday cycling, and approximately a 200 per cent increase in cycling at weekends, in comparison to pre-COVID-19 levels. This needs to be harnessed, and millions more need to be encouraged to take up safe and socially distanced active travel.
Building on significant recent investment, Ministers have pledged to invest an additional £2 billion in cycling and walking and committed to publish a national cycling plan, as well as an updated Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy.
The first stage of this £2 billion investment will be a £250 million emergency active travel fund. The Fund is intended to deliver new pop-up cycle lanes with protected space for cycling, cycle and bus-only corridors, safer junctions and wider pavements. New statutory guidance has also been issued to councils to ensure they are able to reallocate road space for significantly increased numbers of cyclists and pedestrians.
Furthermore, up to half a million £50 Fix Your Bike Vouchers will be issued to help people to bring bikes out of retirement.
Investment in recent years has also enhanced cycling and walking infrastructure. Indeed, £210 million through the Cycle Ambition Cities programme has delivered 155 miles of new segregated cycle routes, 186 miles of new on-road and off-road routes for cyclists and pedestrians and 136 miles of off-road cycling signage and resurfacing improvements across eight cities. In addition, £22 million has been invested to upgrade 32 routes, covering 103 miles, along the National Cycle Network.