Dominic Browne 11 March 2020

Budget 2020: Mayoral authorities win big in transport

The Government has unveiled £4.2bn for urban transport as part of its spring budget giveaways.

The cash will be released from 2022-23 as part of five-year funding settlements for eight mayoral combined authorities, however, some authorities will have to put in place an elected mayor to win their share of the cash.

'Funding will be delivered through five-year, consolidated transport settlements agreed with central government and based on plans put forward by Mayors,' Treasury officials said.

'Following the approach that has worked for London, these settlements will be published once they have been agreed, providing transparency and accountability while giving mayors the flexibility and certainty to deliver their plans.'

West Yorkshire, Greater Manchester, West Midlands, Liverpool City Region, Tyne and Wear, West of England, Sheffield City Region and Tees Valley, are all in line for the cash.

As a first step, the Government will open discussions with Greater Manchester, Liverpool City Region and West Midlands 'in the coming months'.

The new West Yorkshire Combined Authority, Sheffield City Region, Tyne and Wear, West of England and Tees Valley will also receive settlements, 'subject to putting in place appropriate governance to agree and deliver funding, including an elected Mayor for their city regions and transport networks'.

A new directly-elected West Yorkshire mayor has already been announced.

The Treasury also outlined where it wants some of the cash go: 'While it will be for elected Mayors to put forward ambitious plans, the Government would welcome the opportunity to support a range of schemes, such as the renewal of the Sheffield Supertram, the development of a modern, low-carbon metro network for West Yorkshire and tram-train pilots in Greater Manchester.'

The cash pot builds on the £1.7bn Transforming Cities Fund - first unveiled in the Autumn Budget 2017 - and which saw £840m go directly towards six combined authorities.

The Government also confirmed £500m over the next five years 'to support the rollout of a fast-charging network for electric vehicles, ensuring that drivers will never be further than 30 miles from a rapid charging station'.

This article first appeared on Transport Network.

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