Leighton Buzzard obtains grant for sustainable transport plans

Plans for a sustainable transport pilot scheme in Leighton Buzzard are set to progress after the DCLG awarded a £1 million grant.

The funding is part of a £7 million package that aims to test a number of measures on a 1,300-home scheme proposed by Arnold White Estates at Billington Road.

The initiative seeks to reduce car dependency by 20 per cent by encouraging public transport use, cycling and walking.

The homes will have real-time public transport information screens in kitchens and buses will run every 15 minutes to the town centre at peak times. Secure cycle parking and a safe pedestrian route are also planned.

South Bedfordshire Friends of the Earth helped to develop the scheme. Spokeswoman Victoria Harvey explained: "We hope that the measures offer decent alternatives to cars."

Bedfordshire County Council said the initiative could increase public transport trips from 260 to 1,100 per day and cut car journeys from 8,400 to 6,700.

Council transport policy manager Glenn Barcham suggested: "The lessons can be exported to growth sites across the county."

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