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Road pricing schemes win development cash

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REGIONS WITH plans for congestion charging schemes this week came out on top when transport secretary Alistair Darling announced the winning bids for cash to develop traffic reduction projects.

Regional congestion charging schemes will now be developed in Greater Manchester, Tyne & Wear and the West Midlands.

Bristol, Cambridge, Durham and Shrewsbury will develop local schemes.

Local and regional authorities successfully bid for £7M of cash from an £18M fund set up to develop congestion-busting transport schemes.

The fund is available to schemes featuring demand management as part of efforts to tackle congestion and improve public transport.

Authorities favouring demand management measures like workplace parking charges or high occupancy vehicle lanes had their funding bids rejected.

Last year, the government's road pricing feasibility study recommended that local or regional congestion charging schemes should be piloted to test different charging methods as road pricing is further developed.

'I'm convinced that without more radical measures, including more effective demand management, road congestion will get worse. That is why I've been very clear about the need to look at road pricing, ' said Darling.

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