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More congestion on UK roads unless Government rethinks transport policy

For Croner Publications Ltd, Facilities Management News Online, July 2009

A new report published by the Campaign for Better Transport has suggested that congestion on motorways and trunk roads in Britain will get ‘significantly worse’ unless the Government rethinks its transport policy.

Written by Phil Goodwin, Professor of Transport Planning at UWE Bristol, the report recommends that the Government rethinks its approach to transport planning, and outlines a series of measures which could cut congestion and reduce journey times.

The report suggests the Government should improve infrastructure for public transport, walking and cycling, and adjust the costs for different types of transport to encourage people to walk, cycle or use public transport. A roll out of ‘smarter choices’ programmes such as travel planning, information and advice would enable people to make informed choices about how they travel.

To improve congestion, the report suggests reallocating road space to give priority to the most efficient or socially needy road users, and using real-time information and dynamic traffic control systems such as ‘green wave’ systems which allow continuous traffic flow in one direction through several intersections in one direction.

Land-use planning could also be improved so that essential services are near where people live and work, reducing the amount of long journeys on busy roads.

Says Richard George of the Campaign for Better Transport, “It’s time to get tough on congestion and tough on the causes of congestion. Our report suggests some practical solutions which would provide alternatives to those who want them and improve journey times for those who have no option but to drive.”

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