Council may invest in electric buses

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Tuesday, January 14th, 2020 10:31pm

By Carmelo Garcia - Local Democracy Reporter

Herefordshire Council is considering spending up to £39m on new electric buses to improve transport links in the county.

The ambitious proposals, which form part of the local authority’s, medium term financial strategy and will go ahead in the next few years if approved next month.

Council bosses say they aspire to support the county’s transport network in a way that is environmentally friendly and supports the wellbeing of residents.

The medium term plan also includes spending £35.7m on superfast broadband, £5.5m being spent on city centre improvements in Hereford, £2m on infrastructure assets and £1.5m in technology enabled communities.

Council leader David Hitchiner said his administration’s vision is to improve the lives of local residents.

“Our corporate plan shapes the future of Herefordshire and aims to encourage and strengthen our vibrant communities, create a thriving local economy and protect and enhance our environment to ensure Herefordshire remains a great place to live, visit, work, learn and do business,” he said.

“The plan guides the work of the council and our relationship with individuals, families, communities and partners over the next four years.

“Underpinning this plan are the themes of connectivity, wellbeing and sustainability, which sit at the core of our policy-making, planning, and design for the future.

“We know that in the future transport systems must, and will, change, so we need to rethink our investment now in transport infrastructure to tackle the 21st century challenges of climate emergency and to support the wellbeing of our population.

“This will be central to the review of the Hereford bypass and southern link road schemes and the urgent update of our Core Strategy and planning policies.

“Being better connected is not just about the physical infrastructure.

“We all need a bit of help from time to time.

“During such tough times, we believe it is really important that the council supports people and finds ways to help them to connect to the rich tapestry of services provided by the voluntary sector and to their own community.

“The council will always need to safeguard the most vulnerable in our communities, but we want to enable everyone to feel more strongly a part of their local community too.”

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