A new department within the Government named; Active Travel England has been created to manage the £2 billion budget allocated to implement active travel measures across England as well as inspecting the work of the highway authorities.
Alongside this, the Government published “Gear Change: A bold vision for cycling & walking” designed to increase the amount of people walking and cycling. This strategy has been brought forward in timescale as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic to boost walking and cycling. This is due to fears of the pressure on public transport along with nation’s rising obesity levels
An emergency active travel fund with £250 million allocated from the £2 billion budget has now been actioned to enable local authorities to make significant changes to their road layouts, including; pop-up bike lanes, protected space for cyclists, wider pavements and cycling and bus only corridors. These new transport infrastructure projects will go a long way to create more sustainable communities.
The annual report and inspection on highway authorities will commence in 2021 grading them on their performance on active travel measures. An added pressure for walking and cycling projects over a certain threshold will also be put in place to challenge failure. These measures will create a need for a higher standard of Travel Planning to promote and monitor travel behaviour, something we at Smarter Travel Limited know a lot about already!
If you would like to get ahead of the game and start implementing a Travel Plan project then please get in touch!