AQW 25794/11-15

Mr Peter Weir
Democratic Unionist Party
North Down

Tabled Date: 17/09/2013
Answered On Date: 02/10/2013
Priority Written: No

To ask the Minister for Regional Development what plans his Department has to increase spending on cycling initiatives, shown as a proportion of total departmental spend.

Budgets have yet to be agreed for future years and as such it is not possible to predict spend as a proportion to total departmental spend. My Department is providing £4.3m to fund active travel demonstration projects in Belfast, Londonderry, Craigavon and Strabane.  I have also more recently committed £50k for my Department to undertake a Feasibility Study into a cycle / pedestrian footbridge over the River Lagan.
I have asked my officials to ensure that there is a greater focus and priority on measures to assist cyclists in the future and am establishing a cycling unit in my Department to ensure that this is achieved. I also intend to bid for additional in-year funding for cycling infrastructure, when opportunities arise.
As part of the New Approach to Regional Transportation my Department is currently developing transport spending proposals which will feed into the next Programme for Government budget. This is being undertaken through a policy fit process which will identify those transport schemes which will best achieve the strategic objectives of the Northern Ireland Executive.