One billion euros to decarbonise urban transport in Spanish cities

By Sofia Pechin / Updated: 14 Sep 2021

The Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda (Mitma) in Spain has opened its first call to distribute €1 billion of European funds from the national Recovery and Resiliency Plan among city councils. The main objective of this first support programme is to accelerate the decarbonisation of cities, to improve air quality and to mitigate noise.  

The call is mainly aimed at municipalities with more than 50,000 inhabitants, as well as provincial capitals. However, it also includes the possibility for smaller municipalities, i.e. those with between 20,000 and 50,000 inhabitants, to apply if they have public collective transport services. These municipalities can apply with projects that aim to improve digitalisation, to increase fleet renewal and to promote modal shift in urban areas, with projects prioritising active mobility and collective public transport.

The call is open to cover a wide range of actions that could be put in place to achieve its objectives structured along four lines:

  1. Implementation of low-emission zones, including investments in traffic light controls, sensors or license plate recognition programmes.
  2. Measures aimed at promoting modal shift to public transport and healthier ways of travelling. This includes projects that facilitate active mobility, such as the pedestrianisation of streets or the construction of new cycling infrastructure. It also includes measures that prioritise the circulation of collective transport modes and that promote on-demand transport systems, as well as intermodality with zero or low emission vehicles (e.g. carsharing, and the sharing of motorcycles, scooters and bicycles).
  3. Transformation of public transport fleets through the purchase of electric or hydrogen-powered buses and the installation of recharging points.
  4. Digitalisation of public transport services that result in improvements in the user experience or which improve the accessibility of collective public transport. This also includes actions that contribute to greater efficiency in traffic and transport management, as well as in the analysis of information.

In the selection of projects, priority will be given to the maturity, quality and impact of the projects presented by the municipalities, although in all cases applicants are required to have a Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan (SUMP) in place at the time of submitting their application.

A specific web platform has been put in place on Mitma's official website. Municipalities are able to apply until 30 September, with submissions having to be submitted by 14.00 on that day. In addition, and in collaboration with the Spanish Federation of Municipalities and Provinces (FEMP), the Ministry will offer a webinar to inform participants of the details of the call and the process for submitting applications. The webinar will take place on 8 September.

The selected projects will be eligible for funding of up to 90% of the eligible costs, which means that there will be a minimum grant amount of €200,000.

Original article published by Intelligent Transport on 26 August 2021.

Photo Credit: © Macrovector Images - no permission to re-use image(s) without separate licence from Shutterstock.

Southern Europe
Urban mobility planning