Hackney is one of eight London boroughs to benefit from the Mayor Sadiq Khan’s new pollution-busting scheme.
The creation of the City Fringe Low Emissions Neighbourhood, which also covers Tower Hamlets and Islington, includes proposals for tree planting, improved pavements and cycle routes, and parking spaces reserved for only the cleanest vehicles.
The Mayor’s cash injection, along with an agreement for ‘like-for-like’ funding from boroughs, means the number of Low Emissions Neighbourhoods in London will increase from two to five.
These neighbourhoods will come into full effect by the start of 2019.
Mayor Khan said: “Make no mistake: London is in the midst of an air quality crisis. Air pollution is permanently affecting children’s lung development and nearly 10,000 Londoners are dying early every year due to the long-term exposure of London’s dirty air.
“We need urgent and bold action and this includes targeted local initiatives to tackle some of the worst pollution hotspots in London.”
Hackney is the third most densely populated borough in the capital, with dangerously high nitrogen dioxide levels around main roads.
Councillor Feryal Demirci, Hackney’s cabinet member for neighbourhoods and sustainability, said: “I am delighted that we have received this funding – it’s a great opportunity to build on our work with Tower Hamlets and Islington to improve air quality in one of the most built-up parts of the capital.
“Air pollution knows no boundaries, so this is a fantastic opportunity to work together and make our part of London a greener, healthier and happier place to live, work and visit.”
Simon Alcock, spokesperson for environmental lawyers ClientEarth which is based in the borough, welcomed the Mayor’s plans.
He said: “We welcome the Mayor’s commitment to tackle London’s pollution hotspots and the much needed support for London’s boroughs.
“This will help tackle London’s public health crisis caused by air pollution but also needs to be combined with bold policies such as a bigger and better Ultra Low Emission Zone as proposed by the Mayor last month.
“The government need to stop dragging their feet too. We need a new Clean Air Act that is bold and ambitious so everyone can breathe cleaner air.”