An active travel toolbox has been launched to help local authorities and their partners make the case for, and improve walking and cycling schemes.
The free toolbox, which includes guides, resources, tools and case studies, is organised into three areas: making the economic case for active travel; linking active travel and public transport to housing growth and planning; the role of active travel in improving health.
It has been written by Sustrans, walking and cycling charity, in partnership with Living Streets, the TAS Partnership and Dr Adrian Davis, following years of working together to advocate for investment in walking and cycling.
Evidence shows walking and cycling can contribute towards economic performance by reducing congestion, supporting local businesses and high streets, and helping to underpin leisure and tourism sectors.
Making it easier for families and communities to walk and cycle can also improve health and air quality.
Current projections suggest the worsening congestion in UK cities is costing the economy £11 billion a year while the economic cost of obesity is £27 billion a year.
The toolbox includes three tools that which can be used for forecasting the impact of planned interventions:
- The Infrastructure Impact Tool – estimates the impact of investments in specific types of cycling infrastructure.
- The Recreational Expenditure Model – estimates the economic benefit of recreational cycling in terms of expenditure in the local economy.
- The Strategic Investment Tool –aids understanding around the impact and cost of multi-intervention investment.
The toolbox arose from the need to bring together information and resources for local government to develop a business case for walking and cycling, plan and deliver active travel schemes in their area and link walking and cycling schemes to planning and public health.
Jason Torrance, England Policy Director at Sustrans, said: “There is a growing body of evidence that demonstrates investment in walking and cycling has many economic, social, health and environmental benefits and so it must be prioritised.
“Governments have begun to recognise this, recently with the publication of England’s first Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy. The challenge now is to deliver change locally.
“This toolbox brings together existing evidence and supporting case studies from across the UK and beyond to help local authorities and their partners make the case for and deliver walking and cycling solutions on the ground.”
Tompion Platt, Head of Policy and Communications at Living Streets, said: “We welcomed the government’s recent commitment to get more people walking. Now it’s essential that local authorities and LEPs get to work to reduce car use and enable more people to walk and cycle.”
For more information, case studies of walking and cycling infrastructure and photos, contact: