East Lancashire on course for £50m transport boost

Michael Hunt

East Lancashire is one step closer to benefitting from nearly £50m worth of improvements to its public transport system, Transport Minister Sadiq Khan announced today.

The 'Pennine Lancashire' scheme, which has received initial Government approval, involves developing an integrated public transport system designed to improve links between Accrington, Blackburn and Darwen. A significant part of the route would be on dedicated bus lanes.

The aim of the scheme is to improve public transport connections within east Lancashire to improve access to jobs in the area and support the future regeneration of the region's towns.

Transport Minister Sadiq Khan said: "An efficient and reliable transport system is the lifeblood of every local community. This is why we're investing significant amounts of money in east Lancashire's infrastructure.

"The Pennine Reach scheme is exciting. With over half a million people living in and around the area this scheme will make it far easier for people without access to a car to get to work in Manchester, Preston or elsewhere in the region."

The scheme has been designed to improve public transport in east Lancashire between Accrington, Blackburn and Darwen, and includes:

  • Dedicated bus lanes
  • Bus priority at junctions
  • New bus stations at Blackburn and Accrington
  • New road crossings and improved cycle facilities

The Government said that the decision announced today means that Blackburn with Darwen Council and Lancashire County Council can move forward with detailed planning for the scheme.

If full approval is granted, £45m will be provided by the Department for Transport with the remaining funding being provided by local authorities.

The scheme is being promoted by Blackburn with Darwen Council and Lancashire County Council.

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