The West Midlands Combined Authority is required by Law to publish and review a Local Transport Plan for the area covered by Coventry, Solihull, Birmingham, Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton.
In the past, transport planning has been based on the “Predict and Provide” principle. That is, “Predict” where under-capacity or safety will be a problem and then provide more roads and/or railways.
Policy makers are beginning to recognise the problems with this approach:
- Increasing CO2 emissions
- Streets blocked with cars – parked and (slowly) moving
- Public health problems due to people having little or no physical exercise
- Problems accessing services for those who can’t access a car
- Deaths from air pollution
- Significant resistance from residents to new road and railway construction
To name a just a few. So this “Green Paper” proposes an alternative. Instead of “more of the same”, transport projects should be assessed according to how much they help with broad societal objectives. Namely:
- Creating a fairer society
- Supporting local communities and places
- Making people more (physiologically) active
- Achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2041
- Sustaining economic success
It’s important to understand where local policy makers are coming from; in order to come up with convincing arguments for spending more on cycling infrastructure.
There’s a survey as well, closing time: 23:59 on Friday 24th September 2021.