Page last updated at 11:25 GMT, Tuesday, 14 August 2007 12:25 UK

Road charge bid cost almost 10m

Traffic on Oxford Road, Manchester
Fifteen main routes into the city centre will be chargeable

More than 6m of taxpayers' money was spent on the bid to bring congestion charging to Greater Manchester.

The Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (Agma) spent about 9.8m applying for government funding for public transport improvements.

Costs include money spent on public consultation and modelling technology for how congestion could increase.

Although the government bankrolled some of the costs, the rest came from the passenger transport authority.

Two Greater Manchester councils, Trafford and Stockport, voted against the bid, while the other eight all voted in support.

It meant Agma pressed ahead with a bid for 1.2bn from the government's Transport Innovation Fund (TIF), plus permission to borrow 1.8bn more against projected profits from the charge.

Map of congestion zones

If successful, the money will be spent on improving the public transport infrastructure and the introduction of a peak-time charge of up to 5.

A spokesman for Greater Manchester's TIF bid said council bosses believed the money was well spent and could deliver a 3bn "transport revolution" for current and future generations.

"Our TIF proposals encompass the largest and best-ever developed transport investment package anywhere in the UK outside London," said the spokesman.

Work to prepare the bid involved consulting a range of experts to ensure the package best met the future needs of Greater Manchester's growing economy, he added.

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