Housing Minister Caroline Flint and Transport Minister Rosie Winterton yesterday shortlisted a range of housing developments which could benefit from a share of a £200m transport infrastructure fund.
The minsters said the 36 shortlisted schemes, from a 160 expressions of interest, are all in locations that are ‘committed to building more homes and are keen to deliver improvements to their transport infrastructure to support this growth, as part of the government's specially designated 'growth areas' programme’.
Flint said: ‘One of the main priorities this government faces is building the new homes that families and first time buyers, in particular, so badly need. These places are already stepping up to the mark to deliver more housing, so now we are looking to support that development by getting the right infrastructure in place.
‘The schemes shortlisted today for the next stage in bidding for £200m of funding have shown that they can help unlock potential in proposed new developments, as well as provide the transport infrastructure to support growing communities and improve access to town centres and jobs.’
Winterton said the funding will play a critical role in supporting local authorities to ensure housing developments are properly planned, with high quality infrastructure at the centre.
‘Almost half of the investment will go to schemes that reduce the reliance on cars and encourage more sustainable travel. This presents real support to new communities with genuine ambitions for changing the way they travel,’ said Winterton.
The Community Infrastructure Fund is a joint Communities and Local Government and Department for Transport fund for transport schemes that support housing growth. It is part of the £1.7bn that Communities and Local Government is investing in the Growth Areas, Growth Points, Thames Gateway and Eco-towns over the CSR period. Decisions on funding are made jointly by Ministers in both Communities and Local Government and the Department for Transport.
Ministers will announce which schemes have been awarded funding in early 2009.
The government said that decisions on expressions of interest from prospective Eco-towns will be taken separately once the Eco-towns consultation and assessment process is further advanced.