Are there no 'limits to growth' for Walking and Cycling?
The UK Government announced in May £2bn of new funding for cycling and walking – representing a six-fold increase in dedicated funding, the biggest increase this country has ever seen. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the funding would pay for thousands of miles of protected bike lanes so anyone can ride safely; low-traffic neighbourhoods to stop rat-running and make it easier to walk and cycle; bus and bike corridors on some main roads; and funding for a massive rise in e-bikes, all of which will open-up cycling to more and different people and make places better for everyone.
The ambition is clear. We have a unique opportunity to transform the role cycling and walking can play in our transport system, and get England moving differently.
The recent COVID-19 restrictions have profoundly impacted the way people live, work and travel as evidenced by the public’s desire to be more active, and the rise in popularity of cycling and walking. Now, we can embed those changes in people’s travel behaviour, increase active travel, and transform permanently how many people move around, particularly in towns and cities.
ICE firmly supports the ambition. A key recommendation in ICE’s August White Paper The impact of Covid-19 on the UK’s future infrastructure provision was that new infrastructure investments in the short and medium term, particularly as part of any stimulus, should focus on greater active travel (cycling and walking) alongside accelerating the roll-out of both full-fibre and 5G communications infrastructure.
But the engineering challenge is huge. People need to feel safe to get on their bike; and cycling fatalities are growing in some of our towns and cities. Cycling also needs to be speedy and easy; routes need to be joined up and easy to use. And other users of road space cannot be neglected; our towns and cities are already congested and routes need to meet the cyclist need without unduly disrupting others.
This event is the latest in the new series of digitally-delivered ICE Strategy Sessions This Strategy Session will bring together some of the key figures responsible for increasing active travel in some of Britain’s biggest towns and cities and will hear from those with international success stories to share.
It will take place on World Car Free Day, when all around the world towns and cities allow people to experience streets free of motor traffic.
Find out what our experts think will happen in the post-Covid world, now that active travel is commonplace and the commute is on the decline.
For more information please contact:
ICE Events Team