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Transport funding bid could provide boost for sustainable transport in Swansea

Swansea service busses (source: Swansea Council)

IMPROVEMENTS to public transport, more electric vehicle charging infrastructure and new cycling and walking routes are being planned in Swansea.

Swansea Council has bid for nearly £13 million of funding from the Welsh Government to develop a number of projects that would boost public transport use and increase sustainable transport within the city as well as improving transport links with neighbouring Authorities.

A report to be considered by Cabinet on June 15 includes details of all the bid proposals.

More than £4million of funding has been applied for to progress the Swansea Bay & West Wales Metro project – a scheme which aims to improve transport links between Swansea, Neath & Port Talbot, Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire.

Bids are also included for more than half a million pound to improve public transport hubs in Gowerton and Pontarddulais. Some of the funding will also be used to continue the Council’s work in looking for an alternative park and ride site for Landore – the current site now forms part of the wider Copperworks regeneration works.

Additional bids within the report aim to enable the next phase of electric vehicle charging infrastructure within Swansea, increasing the number of charging points available for electric vehicle owners.

A further £6million is also being bid for, in an effort to expand the city’s walking and cycling infrastructure. If successful, the money will go towards creating new off-road routes across the city. These include a new route in the north of the Morriston community, improvements to the route between Kingsbridge and Grovesend, as well as new routes in Pontarddulais along with a route between the DVLA and Morriston Hospital.

Andrea Lewis, Cabinet Member for Service Transformation, said: “Increasing our electric vehicle charging infrastructure in Swansea is key to encouraging more motorists to make the switch.

“As a Council, we are also increasing the numbers of electric vehicles we operate across our entire fleet. We’ve also installed electric charging points in many of our city centre and beach car parks. This funding helps us continue this work.”

Andrew Stevens, Cabinet Member for Environment & Infrastructure, said: “This latest report is a clear statement of our intentions to take forward major improvements for sustainable transport in Swansea.

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“Public transport is an essential part of any major city and we are no different in wanting to make sure we have all the infrastructure in place that not only helps boost use of buses, trains and taxis within Swansea but also improves links with our neighbours in Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire and Neath & Port Talbot.

“This report seeks to address all those issues as well as taking forward plans to increase use of electric vehicles in the city.

“We are also seeking further funding to continue the excellent work completed in previous years to create new, safe walking and cycling routes. A number of new schemes are included in the report which expand on what we have developed recently, helping to connect communities together and help reduce our reliance on a car.

“The Welsh Government has been extremely supportive in previous years in terms of funding these schemes and I’m confident our Transport Officers have once again put together a series of schemes which will be a huge benefit to Swansea and beyond.”