Saturday, May 9, 2020, latest;
The Government have pledged a 2bn package to boost cycling and walking during what has been labelled as a “once-in-a-generation” chance to change the way people travel in the UK.
Announced by Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, the first stage in the plan, worth £250m, is a series of emergency interventions to make cycling and walking safer, including measures such as widening pavements, pop-up bike lanes, cyclist-only streets and trialling the use of e-scooters.
He will bring forward a “national cycling plan” in early June to set out how they will double cycling and increase walking by 2025, plus further statutory advice is expected to be published for councils to accommodate for cyclists and walkers.
He also revealed that large swathes of the country’s public transport network will be reduced to just 10 per cent capacity due to coronavirus social distancing measures – even when full services resume. It represents an “enormous logistical challenge” to get Britain moving again while avoiding overcrowding, and even with every train, bus and tram fully operational it “will not be enough”.
It has been further emphasised that any changes to lockdown measures announced by the PM tomorrow will be “extremely cautious”, with the Prime Minister expected to announce small changes to measures. Among these, it’s predicted that outdoor exercise will be allowed more than once a day, plus the addition of reopening garden centres and requiring passengers arriving from abroad into airports and ports to quarantine for 14 days.