Government should enable more active travel

The Department for Transport launched temporary guidance on implementing Traffic Regulation Orders (TROs) last week as some local authorities were struggling to comply with existing regulations due to the COVID-19 situation.

The guidance, was produced in response to concerns about the ability of traffic authorities to implement the publicity requirements when making permanent or temporary TROs during the current crisis. Its purpose is to mitigate the impact on the public and assist authorities in considering other means to inform them. It is temporary guidance and will be withdrawn once conditions allow.

A group of active travel organisations along with Barts NHS Health Trust are now calling for the government to go a step further and actively encourage local authorities to allocate more road space to walking and cycling during the crisis. The reason being to support key workers to get safely to and from work, but also to adapt the road space to a general public ‘that has increased its use of walking and cycling during the current lockdown.’

It is also recommended that the Government considers these measures beyond the current lockdown restrictions to allow for more people to use active travel safely and segregated as we might see fewer people on public transport once the current lockdown restrictions are eased. This might be due to a behavioural change meaning people will be less willing to travel on public transport or the government might restrict capacity on public transport as restrictions are eased, says the letter.

For the full letter, please see here.


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