Funding for the outer ring road dualling scheme has been deferred to next year as the transport capital budget has more than halved.
Major schemes such as the outer ring road dualling and Haxby Station have seen £23.1m and £14.9m taken from their annual budgets, leaving them with £1.1m and £157K respectively.
According to the transport lead on City of York Council Cllr Pete Kilbane, the funds for the ring road will be returned next year.
The scheme aims to improve York’s highway network, reduce congestion, facilitate the movement of car journeys out of the city centre and enhance the pedestrian and cycle experience with improvements to active travel provision along the network.
Cllr Kilbane said they had been delayed due to “concerns over the technical detail of the proposal put forward” by the previous Liberal Democrat and Green Party coalition that ruled in York between 2019 and 2023.
The entire transport capital budget for 2023/24 has now decreased by around half, from £71.7m to £35.7m.
Cllr Chris Steward, Conservative group leader, said: “We are concerned at the extent of what the council will call re-profiling in a number of big areas.
“This sounds like an accounting term but is really about significant delays to the A1237 dualling and Haxby Station in particular.
“Given that the previous Liberal Democrat and Green administration was riddled with infighting about the A1237 dualling, such a significant change in spending from one year to the next will heighten concerns about Labour’s focus on delivering the project.”
He added: “It is yet more delay but without any of the sensible adjustments to the project that we have called for.”
Get ready to go
The Green Party’s Andy D’Agorne, former transport executive at the City of York Council, said he hoped projects would be delivered next year.
“£23m spending on dualling the ring road is a delay not a cut, unless it fails to get planning permission or becomes a victim of government spending cuts,” he said.
Cllr Kilbane, who is also the council’s deputy leader, said: “Progress on Haxby Station is very much in the hands of the Conservative minister in the Department for Transport, and a decision to release funding to Network Rail to get on with developing the station.
“The council has done everything it needs to at this stage and is waiting for others to do what’s required.
“On the outer ring road, Active Travel England expressed concerns over the technical detail of the proposal put forward by the previous administration.
“That detail has to be worked through so the sensible thing is to move the funding into 2024/25, and be ready to go when the application comes forward.”
Most funding for the transport capital programme is from external funding sources, with funding allocated from council resources to support the programme.
City of York Council is also facing an £11m overspend and executive members are trying to find ways to reduce it.
It needs to find £10m a year in savings to avoid being another local authority to issue a section 114 notice, which effectively declares bankruptcy.