Cumbria looks to future with 15-year transport plan

Cumbria County Council has finalised and published a transport infrastructure plan for the next 15 years, despite being slated for abolition.

The council said the objectives of the Cumbria Transport Infrastructure Plan (CTIP) 2022 - 2037 are:

  • ‘Encouraging active travel and digital infrastructure as enablers of inclusive economic growth, promoting health and well-being, and decarbonising transport.’
  • ‘Promoting improved transport networks across and into Cumbria to connect our places, support economic growth, and open opportunities for businesses and communities.’
  • ‘Promoting integrated approaches to transport, supporting opportunity and renewal in local towns and communities in Cumbria with better transport that improves social inclusion.’
Victorian railway viaduct and 18th century packhorse bridge at Dent Head, Cumbria

Keith Little, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: ‘Cumbria has huge potential and great ambition for the future. Provision of an effective transport network that meets the needs of its current residents, businesses and visitors and helps attract and retain new ones, is essential in unlocking this potential.

‘The CTIP is an important step toward this, setting out key objectives for improving travel in the county, and I'd like to thank everyone for giving their feedback and views during the public consultation.’

The council developed the plan with Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership (CLEP) and consulted on it last autumn.

Dr Steve Curl, CLEP board member with responsibility for Transport and Infrastructure, said: ‘The vision of the CTIP is to make Cumbria one of the best-connected rural geographies in the UK, addressing the key issues of mobility for all travellers on all modes of transport, as well as alternatives to travelling, including digital connectivity. Decarbonisation of all forms of transport, including freight, is a key thread running through the Plan.’

The council said that although the plan sets out a number of clear ambitions, ‘their delivery depends upon the availability of Government funding and the support of partner organisations’.

Under current central government plans, the county will be divided into two unitary authorities from next year and the county council abolished.

Last month Cumbria vowed to continue its legal battle against the reorganisation plans, despite a court defeat.

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