AUTOMATIC numberplate recognition (ANPR) cameras are to be installed in the district as part of plans for a Clean Air Zone.

The intention to begin a procurement "in excess of £2m" for the cameras, and associated network connection infrastructure, will be discussed this evening by Bradford Council's Regeneration and Environment Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

A report issued ahead of the meeting says: "Due to on-going forecast air quality exceedances, Bradford Council has received ministerial direction from the Government to produce a business case for an Air Quality Plan to achieve air quality compliance in the shortest possible time.

"In line with Government guidance, and as part of the development of its Plan, the Council has concluded that it is necessary to implementation a Clean Air Zone in order to achieve sufficient improvement in air quality and public health."

A full business case was made to the Government in September of this year, setting out its plans for delivery of Clean Air Plan measures.

The report says: "This plan commits the Council to implementing a category ‘C’ Clean Air Zone by the start of January 2022, which is a challenging timescale.

"To ensure that the Council can achieve this deadline it is necessary to start procurement of the Clean Air Zone infrastructure comprising 300 plus ANPR cameras and their associated communications network infrastructure in order that deployment of these can commence early in 2021."

It adds: "Funding for the procurement of the Clean Air Zone infrastructure is provided through central government’s Implementation Fund.

"An initial capital funding allocation has been provided to the Council for the delivery of some intervention measures. However, the final value of funding to be awarded to the Council will, in accordance with HM Treasury Green Book guidance, be based on the tendered rates returned from this procurement exercise."

Geographically, the Clean Air Zone will include Bradford city centre, from the outer ring road, extending up the Canal Road corridor and Manningham Lane into Shipley and Saltaire. Although private cars would not be charged for entering the zone, HGVs, buses, taxis and coaches that do not meet clean air standards would be charged up to £50 a day.

Back in September, Bradford Council said plans were moving ahead despite other local authorities in Yorkshire - Leeds City Council and Sheffield City Council - reviewing planned schemes.

Councillor Sarah Ferriby, portfolio holder for Healthy People and Healthy Places, said at the time: “Improving the air quality of the district remains a major priority for Bradford Council. We absolutely recognise the seriousness of poor air quality. Quite literally it costs lives. This is why we are working closely with the Government to put in place a wide range of interventions to reduce pollution in the shortest possible time across the district, not just within the proposed Clean Air Zone."

The meeting takes place from 5.30pm tonight and can be watched online.