Regional transport body Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) has invested more than £1 million in Argyll and Bute in the past five years, a new report has revealed.
The report, ‘SPT: Delivering for Argyll and Bute’, shows nearly £900,000 of capital funding was awarded to support a range of sustainable transport projects in the area between 2017 and 2021.
A further £300,000 was also awarded to Argyll and Bute in 2021/22 to support their delivery.
The investment includes almost £500,000 to help the council deliver a series of targeted bus improvements in areas like Helensburgh, Cardross, Rhu and Rosneath.
This has helped deliver around 70 new shelter replacements, raised kerbs and bus built outs, which will help wheelchair users, people with pushchairs and those with reduce mobility to board and alight from buses more easily.
SPT has provided £413,000 to the council’s Helensburgh and Lomond Cycleways project which will provide a cross-boundary dedicated high quality walking, wheeling and cycling route linking Helensburgh and Dumbarton via Cardross.
The travel body also provided £300,000 for the construction of Helensburgh Park and Ride, which is built on the former gasometer works between East Princess Street and Grant Street.
The facility was built to help ease pressure on town centre parking caused by commuters, and the site is close to Helensburgh train station and nearby bus services.
The Helensburgh and Lomond area of Argyll and Bute is one of 12 places to benefit from funding provided by SPT, which also covers East Ayrshire, East Dunbartonshire, East Renfrewshire, Glasgow, North Ayrshire, North Lanarkshire, South Lanarkshire, Renfrewshire, South Ayrshire, West Dunbartonshire and Inverclyde.
The transport body pointed out that the cross-council boundary nature of transport and travel means investment in one area will benefit all residents who travel for work or leisure.
Across the west of Scotland, SPT has supported 6.1 million bus station departures across Buchanan, Hamilton, East Kilbride, Greenock, Braehead and Silverburn in recent years.
It has sold 515,000 ZoneCard tickets since 2017/18 across the Subway and participating rail and bus operators, and 43.7 million Subway journeys have been taken since 2017.
It has supported 200 bus services run by around 20 operators on behalf of SPT, and has 33 MyBus services operating in the west of Scotland.
SPT has also invested in several regional projects in recent years, including the Subway Modernisation Project, its ongoing bus stop and shelter upgrade programme and its Real Time Passenger Information roll out.
Valerie Davidson, chief executive of SPT, said:
“We continue to deliver a range of services in the Helensburgh and Lomond area of Argyll and Bute and across the region either directly or on behalf of councils.
“As this report shows, we have invested more than £1 million over the last five years in sustainable transport projects in the area.
“SPT’s activities support the west of Scotland’s regional transport network to the benefit of all residents who travel across the area.
“While the Covid-19 pandemic resulted in significant impacts on our operational activities due to reduced travel demand, the majority of services were maintained to ensure transport remained in place for key workers and those making essential trips.”