Thursday, June 10, 2010

SNP Active Transport Cuts

The SNP have been going on about a greener Scotland and about the threat of other parties having to make cuts in order for our country not to collapse under a mountain of debt. You'd therefore expect the SNP to have done all they can in every area to protect budgets for environmental concerns.

Don't you believe it.

As Alison McInnes MSP, Lib Dem Transport Spokesperson, points out ahead of a debate in the Scottish Parliament on the Transport Committee’s Active Travel report:

"Active travel is good for the environment, good for communities and good for the people of Scotland.

"Unfortunately the Transport Minister is not going far enough in supporting active travel.

"Under the SNP the cycling budget has fallen each year, whereas it rose under the Liberal Democrat-Labour Executive.

"This Government are serial offenders- they promise much but fail to match aspiration with investment.

"The Transport Minister is not going to meet his ambitious cycling target unless he puts his money where his mouth is and allocates a greater proportion of Scotland's transport budget to active travel."

Cycle path provision is getting a raw deal under the SNP. Encouraging people out of their cars and unto their bikes. There is a network of cycle paths across Edinburgh and the Lothians but there is always room for improvement to encourage more people to take up the option. For example to cycle from Bathgate to Linlithgow you have to take you life in your hands on some of the blind corners when motorists think they own the road and because they don't see or hear a car as they approach forget the option of a cyclist the other side of the bend and hedge as they cut the corner to maintain speed.

Cycling is a nice way to get out and about and get fresh air and exercise. The more cycle routes that are taken away from shared bus/taxi lanes the more user friendly it will become for nervous cyclists. Especially ones who unlike me took on London traffic on a bike for 8 years largely unscathed.

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