Scotland's new regional transport partnerships (RTPs) have been awarded£1 million of Executive funding over the next two years to encourage employers to develop sustainable transport plans through the appointment of dedicated travel plan officers.
Each RTP will be tasked with developing a travel plan strategy which will support the overall transport strategy for each region. While all sectors are being targeted, a key objective is to ensure all local authorities develop travel plans by April 2008.
Transport Minister Tavish Scott said:
'Many Scots drive to work without being aware of the alternatives. A more sustainable transport system for the future means less pollution and congestion. This devolved government is committed to promoting travel choice and helping people switch to better environmental options like walking and cycling, car sharing and public transport.
'The new RTPs are ideally placed to work with employers in their region. That is why we have given them funding to support this important work. This will ultimately help all employers play their part in developing viable alternatives to car use.'
Travel plans can incorporate a range of measures such as:
Changes to car parking arrangements
Working with operators to improve or promote local public transport provision
Flexi-time and home-working
Video-conferencing and other technological solutions which reduce the need to travel
Putting in place practical measures to promote walking and cycling, such as well-lit paths, secure bike parking and showers
Improved accessibility to a specific site
The£500,000 per annum award to RTPs is for the two financial years 2006-07 and 2007-08 and is allocated as follows:
Tayside and Central RTP -£65,000
Highlands and Islands RTP and Shetland RTP (joint funding) -£65,000
North-East of Scotland RTP -£65,000
South-East of Scotland RTP -£90,000
South-West of Scotland RTP -£45,000
West of Scotland RTP (STP) -£170,000
This will fund in most cases one post (three in the case of the West of Scotland RTP), and also includes additional funding to support activity by the postholders.