Local government highways and transport departments in England showed the largest increase in capital expenditure of any local service sector in 2014-15 with spending up £1.6bn (25%) to reach £8.26bn overall, government figures have revealed.
The total far outstripped housing, which followed next with an increase of £849m in capital expenditure to reach £4.8bn overall, while environmental services increased by the largest percentage up 32.2% from £581m to hit £767m.
The provisional end of year figures from the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) released today show that 2014-15 saw highways and transport reach its highest level as a proportion of total capital expenditure over the last parliament at 37%.
It also revealed that of the £8.26bn spent on highways and transportation the Greater London Authority accounts for £4.41bn.
Capital receipts from highways and transport brought £48m back in.
In total capital expenditure by local authorities in England increased to £22.1bn in 2014-15 from £19.6bn in 2013-14, a year-on-year increase of 12.5%, while capital receipts increased to £2.9bn from £2.7bn in 2013-14, up 7.4%.
Overall capital expenditure is forecast to increase to £25.9bn in 2015-16, a year-on-year rise of 4.5%., with receipts forecast to increase to £3.3bn in 2015- 16.
The DCLG forecasts that highways and transport capital expenditure will fall to £8.11bn this financial year, although such forecasts often have a fairly wide margin of error - for instance capital expenditure in 2014-15 is 18.4% lower than the forecast of £27.1bn.