The Conservatives have called on the Green Party to spend more money repairing roads and pavements in Brighton and Hove.
The call comes as councillors prepare to discuss a proposal to put £325,000 into filling hundreds of potholes throughout the area.
The sum is part of the £9 million planned spending in the coming financial year – starting from April – with £2.6 million set aside to strengthen the A259 King’s Road Arches by the West Pier.
Brighton and Hove City Council also plans to use £1 million to pay for road reconstruction work to help avoid the need to spend money on the future repair of potholes.
The opposition Conservative group leader Councillor Geoffrey Theobald said: “The Green administration has put an awful lot of time, money and effort over the last three years into schemes such as 20mph zones, Lewes Road, Eastern Road and the Seven Dials.
“As a result I believe that they have taken their eye off the ball on the basic fundamentals such as road and pavement repairs, street lighting and pedestrian crossings.
“That is why I shall be moving an amendment to the Policy and Resources Committee report calling for a greater proportion of the money to be spent on highway maintenance.”
The Conservatives’ transport spokesman Councillor Graham Cox said: “It is not just motorists who would benefit from this extra funding.
“I am getting many complaints from cyclists about an increasing number of damaging and dangerous potholes on the roads and also from pedestrians who have seen an alarming deterioration in the state of the city’s pavements.
“It’s time for the Greens to do the basics – repair the roads and collect the rubbish.”
Councillor Ian Davey, the Greens’ transport spokesman, said: “We welcome the Tories’ support for our proposals.
“We’re investing more in road renewal than they ever did and since coming to administration we have brought in around £10 million of external funding to the city for transport schemes – meaning more can be spent locally on other areas of transport like maintenance and resurfacing.
“Unlike the Tories, who cut transport funding in favour of other projects, we’ve maintained spending on transport in recognition of the importance of a good highways network to our city’s residents, visitors and businesses, however they choose to travel.
“We’re working hard to meet the challenges of a growing city.
“Our infrastructure is the backbone of Brighton and Hove’s economy and that is why we are investing more in these projects than the city has seen in recent years.
“It is only through investing in our future – including resurfacing roads and rebuilding our seafront – that we will continue to develop our reputation as a visitor destination and economic powerhouse.
“However, we also need to make our neighbourhoods safer, so we’re committed to make it easier for people to walk, cycle or take public transport to get around the city.
“As more and more people choose sustainable transport, we will see greater benefits to everyone’s health and wellbeing as congestion and air pollution fall and the roads become safer.”
Spending budgeted for other big projects in the coming year includes
- £1 million to transform the Brighton Station area
- £650,000 to renew the Vogue Gyratory, including new traffic lights, resurfacing and a segregated cycle lane
- £600,000 on upgrading and replacing street lighting with modern low-energy units
- £200,000 to help improve pavements across the city, mainly on well-used corridors
The council said that its clear commitment to transport projects through the Local Transport Plan (LTP) had previously resulted in the city winning external funding for schemes including
- £4.4 million for Lewes Road and two national park projects
- £3.5 million for the Better Bus Area scheme
- £750,000 for clean bus technology
- £300,000 to make the Seven Dials safer for cyclists
- £330,000 for Old Shoreham Road
- £1 million for pothole repairs including £325,000 for 2014-15
The council said that it had also made a bid to the recently announced £140 million fund for flood-damaged roads.
It has secured funds from developers and was actively seeking funding from the newly created Local Growth Fund for major transport schemes including the Valley Gardens project.
It added that bids would also be made for seafront structures, London Road and Preston Circus and for Shoreham Harbour.
The Policy and Resources Committee meeting takes place at 4pm tomorrow (Thursday 20 March) at Hove Town Hall.
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