The Levelling Up Fund is designed to invest in infrastructure that improves everyday life across the UK. The £4.8bn fund will support town centre and high street regeneration, local transport projects, and cultural and heritage assets.
If Lancashire’s bid is successful, it could secure up to £50 million to develop a range of complementary public transport, walking and cycling projects that would significantly improve travel opportunities for people across East Lancashire, making them safer and greener.
After considering 600 potential transport schemes county-wide, Lancashire County Council selected three themed interventions in the East Lancashire districts of Burnley, Hyndburn, Pendle and Rossendale.
The title of the bid is 'Levelling Up East Lancashire. Creating opportunities through greener, safer and healthier travel'.
The bid was made on the same day (Tuesday August 2) a bid for £50m to make Eden Project North in Morecambe a reality was submitted by Lancaster City Council.
The three themes of the East Lancashire bid are Liveable Neighbourhoods, Public Transport Service Improvements and Active Travel – all helping to improve the health and well-being of local people.
County Councillor Aidy Riggott, cabinet member for economic development and growth, said: "A huge amount of work has been undertaken to identify the areas that would benefit the most from the Levelling Up Fund. This includes looking at levels of employment, health, physical activity, air quality, car ownership, road accidents, walking and cycling, and bus and rail services.
"Thank you to everyone who took part in our recent public engagement that captured residents' views on the issues faced in their communities and potential transport interventions. This feedback has been used to help shape the final proposals.”
If Lancashire's bid is successful, more detailed proposals will be developed with input from partners and with close engagement with residents, organisations and businesses.
The county council has also offered in-principle funding support to six Levelling Up Fund bids being made by district and borough councils from its own £5million Levelling Up Investment Fund.
The council's being supported are Preston City Council, Chorley Council, West Lancashire Council, Rossendale Council, Hyndburn Council and Fylde Council.