Several Northern Ontario cities are getting some new money from the province to improve things for cyclists, and to encourage more people to jump on a bicycle and save the environment.

The new money for cycling infrastructure is part of Ontario's “Climate Change Action Plan.” The province says it will fund new bike lanes and other improvements for cyclists.

In the north, Sudbury is getting the largest slice at $1.1 million, while Sault Ste. Marie gets $580,000, and North Bay gets $50,000.

 Espanola, Spanish and Cochrane are getting $25,000 each.

Obviously, the cycling community welcomes this new money, but so does the City of Greater Sudbury's Active Transportation Coordinator, Marisa Talarico.

She says it's an opportunity to realize several cycling projects that couldn't otherwise be funded by the city's annual cycling budget of $800,000.

"We'll be looking at opportunities for how we can quickly implement some of those low-hanging fruit projects in the Transportation Master Plan. So that's things like improving bike parking, on-road cycling facilities, and focusing on connecting some of the infrastructure we've already put in place this year." says Talarico.

She says the city has already identified specific projects, but that this provincial funding is flexible and allows the city the discretion to re-allocate it to other cycling initiatives as it sees fit.

All of the money needs to be spent by the year 2020.