lstf money

Local Sustainable Transport Fund – £275,000 spent on widening a trunk road roundabout in Rotherham

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Newly widened, the third outside lane on the approach and on the roundabout is new – Funded by LSTF

In July 2014 Rotherham Council decided to spend £225,000 of their Local Transport Plan funding on improving Rotherway Roundabout [council approval document]

Earlier this year it became clear that the costs had risen to £275,000 and that the funding source had been switched to the Local Sustainable Transport Fund [LSTF final spend document]

£275,000 of LSTF money to be spent on Rotherway Roundabout Revisions. Source
£275,000 of LSTF money to be spent on Rotherway Roundabout Revisions. Source

A significant queue frequently forms on the A630 West Bawtry Road approach to the Rotherway roundabout in the evening peak period and at times this queue can be 600m long. This queue causes delay to traffic using the A630 and also causes issues with some drivers using an adjacent service road at inappropriate speed to cut out some of the queue.

Consideration of the practicalities of the free flow and widening options shows that the preferred scheme is to widen the A631 West Bawtry Road approach from Canklow entry to the Rotherway roundabout and it is recommended that this scheme is progressed to detailed design and implementation.

It is expected that by reducing the length of queues on the A630 West Bawtry Road entry to the Rotherway roundabout that traffic queues and delay would be reduced and that, together with the recently introduced traffic calming, would mean that drivers would no longer use the service road.

This was approved along with the preliminary design below.

Rotherway Roundabout Preliminary Drawing

You can see on Streetview the construction works of the approach widening and the roundabout widening. There was already a shared use footway at the edge, that hasn’t been changed.

This is what it looks like now. Is this a good way to spend £275,000 of LSTF money? I don’t think so!

budgets lstf

South Yorkshire Local Sustainable Transport Fund 2015/16 – ‘Inmotion! altogether better travel’

LSTF Cycling part

The DfT have released the winning bids for the latest round of LSTF to cover 2015/16. This grant only covers revenue (ongoing costs), capital expenditure has been wrapped up in the Local Growth Fund. In South Yorkshire the South Yorkshire Integrated Transport Authority (ITA) submitted the bid along with the Passenger Transport Executive, Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield.

Total project cost of £6.325 million, with £1.479 million from local contribution and £4.811 million from the LSTF grant.

The cycling element makes up 35% of the total scheme and consists of supporting 2-3 cycle hubs in each district (presumably Sheffield, Rotherham, Doncaster and Barnsley) which will have a shop, parking, bike hire, cafe, showers, training, repairs etc. The Cycle Boost scheme looks to continue, and I think a Sheffield Sky Ride event will come from this budget.

The benefit cost ratio is calculated as 3.9 but I think most of this comes from the mass participation Sky Ride event, the stated benefits of which seem to be a little dubious!

In addition, to capitalise on the Tour de France, a mass participation event is planned for Sheffield attracting 10,000 cyclists leading to almost 500,000 car kms saved in the first year.

Part LSTF Contribution Local Contribution Total
Total LSTF Scheme £4,811,000 £1,479,000 £6,325,000
Cycling Element: Cycle Boost Hubs £1,593,597 £568,148 £2,196,205 (35%)
LSTF Cycling part
LSTF Cycle Boost Hubs


A note on the costs of LSTF. The local and LSTF contributions to the Cycle Boost Hubs don’t add up to the total cost, £34,000 is missing! The total LSTF project cost when adding up the schemes come to £442k less than the stated full scheme cost, where is this almost half a million pounds going?

LSTF Project Costs not adding up?
LSTF Project Costs not adding up?

On another note, transparency surrounding this application has been very poor. I had to submit an FOI request to a local authority to get a copy. It has been published on the internet, but at an unpublished url of which isn’t included in the sites sitemap or linked to any news article or press release!

On yet another note, the DfT originally stated that they would provide £78.5m to LSTF projects, but only £64m has been allocated! Where is this missing £14.5m?

council lstf

#NotDriving – Sheffield’s latest promotion for sustainable travel

Not-Driving_Logo_Green_500There is a new sustainable travel campaign in Sheffield. #NotDriving. The aim is to raise awareness and encourage wider use of sustainable travel whether that’s public transport, walking, cycling or even smarter driving. In essence, it’s all about inspiring people to travel in Sheffield in a healthier way.

So, how is this accomplished? We give away prizes in return for you ditching your car on journeys to
work, nights out or anywhere for that matter. Pledge the number of miles you would have driven right here on our site for a chance to be entered into the monthly prize draws.

This scheme is running for 3 years and has a budget of £30,000 for it’s lifetime. Would this money be better spent elsewhere? Is this the sort of project envisiged at the inception of the Local Sustainable Transport Fund?

The establishment of the LSTF reflects the importance the Government attach to helping build locally a strong economy and addressing at a local level the urgent challenge of climate change and the commitment made in the coalition agreement to promoting sustainable travel initiatives.

Norman Baker,  Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Regional and Local Transport) – 13th December 2010