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Policy Scan

Sustrans Policy Scan is a regular summary of key policy thinking, reports, announcements and consultations:

Sustrans says: Sustrans press comments, reports and campaigns relating to policy

Key developments: Relevant government and other organisations’ policy/reports/campaigns

Consultations and inquiries: Sustrans' responses and upcoming consultations

Latest Policy Scan - March 2018 (pdf)

Sustrans says

A selection of our articles, blog posts and news.

Road safety applies to everyone – our response to the UK Government’s cycling and walking safety review (09/03/18) Responding Xavier Brice, Sustrans CEO commented: “We welcome the Government’s ‘Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy Safety Review’ and especially the inclusion of pedestrians in the review. This is something we advocated. Safety concerns are some of the greatest barriers to more people choosing to walk and cycle and we are pleased that the Review is seeking to make it easier for everyone to travel on foot or by bike, and recognises the wide benefits that active travel brings to individuals and societies.”

Calling for equal representation of women in transport (05/03/18) A new active travel and gender report we've released today shows whilst women are motivated to travel actively for physical and mental health reasons, worries about their personal safety, convenience (particularly when taking multi-stop trips) and appearance are all barriers to preventing them from cycling and walking. The ‘Are We Nearly There Yet?’ report looked at the travel habits and choices of nearly 2,000 women in Glasgow and combined the findings with a literature review of research on women’s travel patterns across Scotland, the UK and Europe.

Calling for a new clean air act (13/03/18) Responding to the findings of the joint parliamentary committee report on improving air quality Sustrans welcomed and supported the findings of the ‘Improving Air Quality’ report. We believe the Government must act now to form a new Clean Air Act, fit for the 21st century, which improves existing legislation and enshrines our right to breathe clean air into UK law.

More cycling in Newcastle could mean £1.7m annual NHS savings (23/02/18) Health, air quality and the local economy would all greatly benefit if everyone living in Newcastle who wants to cycle were able to get on their bikes for regular journeys, according to our new analysis of findings from the Bike Life reports.  The Newcastle Bike Life report which we published in November last year with Newcastle City Council, and is part of the UK’s biggest assessment of cycling in cities, showed that 52% of people would like to start cycling or could cycle more, but many were put off by poor safety on the roads and a lack of protected bicycle lanes.

Plans for rapid transit link along Bristol and Bath Railway Path: Our response (07/02/18) In an open letter to the local authority leaders Sustrans criticised the suggestion that the Bristol and Bath Railway Path could be used for light rail connecting the two cities. The Railway Path celebrates its 40th anniversary next year and in that time it has become the busiest dedicated traffic-free route in the country for people walking and cycling.

Paving the way for walking and cycling in transport policies (09/03/18) New evidence on how walking and cycling can help to reduce congestion offers huge possibilities in terms of turning around transport policy. But effecting this change depends upon embedding evidence-based approaches in transport policy. This blog summarises Sustrans’ contribution to the recent conference event Decongesting Europe: New approaches to freeing our cities.

Key developments

Apply for the Transforming Cities Fund (13/03/18) The Transforming Cities Fund aims to improve productivity and spread prosperity through investment in public and sustainable transport in some of the largest English city regions. The fund is open until 8 June 2018.

Scottish Transport Statistics, No 36, 2017 Edition (28/02/18) Transport Scotland have released the Transport Statistics report for 2017.  The figures include a 3% increase in cycle traffic in 2016 and an increase in mode share for travel by bicycle to work from 2% in 2006 to 3% in 2016.

Government loses third air pollution case as judge rules air pollution plans ‘unlawful’ (21/02/18) Environmental lawyers ClientEarth won a third case against the UK government over the country’s illegal and harmful levels of air pollution.  In a ruling handed down at the High Court in London, Mr Justice Garnham declared the government’s failure to require action from 45 local authorities with illegal levels of air pollution in their area unlawful.  He ordered ministers to require local authorities to investigate and identify measures to tackle illegal levels of pollution in 33 towns and cities as soon as possible – as only 12 of the 45 are projected to have legal levels by the end of 2018.

Mayor announces more than £10m additional funding for London boroughs (14/02/18) Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London, announced that an additional £11.6m will be available in this year’s budget to give to councils to fund improvements to their streets and local neighbourhoods.  The money, which will be allocated between London’s 33 boroughs, is to support transport projects in the capital. It will be used in areas like reducing road danger, transforming local environments, encouraging cycling and walking, accessibility and improving air quality.

Stay Well in Wales (16/02/18) The national Stay Well in Wales survey, run by Public Health Wales and Bangor University, found that the Welsh public have a strong preference for more public health regulation and intervention.  53% of people in Wales agree that more money should be spent on preventing illness and less on treating it. Only 15% disagreed.

£8.1m Active Travel funding awarded to local authorities (07/02/18) The Welsh Government has announced over £8m funding to boost walking and cycling infrastructure, improve safety and support the economy.  The funding will accelerate delivery of a range of travel improvements linked to Welsh Government transport priorities in support of the landmark Active Travel (Wales) Act 2013.

Chief Medical Officer annual report 2017: health impacts of all pollution – what do we know? (02/03/18) Professor Dame Sally Davies's ninth independent report as Chief Medical Officer discusses the threat to health posed by pollution to people living in England. The report includes evidence around pollution and health inequalities. The report also considers ‘co-benefits’ to pollution interventions. For example, traffic calming measures have the potential to generate an increase in physical activity.

Active travel: Walking and cycling, 2016-17 (30/01/18) Welsh Government (Statistics Wales) report. It found 5% of adults cycled at least once a week and 61% of adults walked at least once a week. 51% of people living in urban areas walk at least three times a week, compared with 38% of those from rural areas.

Pedal cyclist casualties, 2016 (25/01/18) Welsh Government (Statistics Wales) report that includes information on the age and sex of casualty, type of road, speed limit and time of accident.

Radical Transport Policy Two-Pagers - #1 We need fare-free buses (19/03/18) Radical Transport Policy Two-Pagers are a series of short papers written collaboratively by Transport for Quality of Life Associates and Directors, and others with whom they work. This initial paper explores the benefits of introducing free local bus services.

How Cities across Europe Beat Road Congestion (14/03/18) In conjunction with a major conference Polis have released the final reports for two EU projects on congestion. The FLOW Project developed transport analysis tools designed to better assess the impacts of walking and cycling improvements on transport system performance. The TRACE project developed ICT based tracking services. The tools gather travel data which helps understand behaviour and route choice, and can thus be used for mobility planning and for promoting walking and cycling.

Consultations and inquiries

Sustrans responses

Upcoming consultations and inquiries

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