West Yorkshire Combined Authority have today (26 March 2015) launched a consultation as part of the development of what is called the Single Transport Plan, aimed at setting out a clear long-term vision for transport in West Yorkshire. Despite recent developments like the West Yorkshire Cycling Strategy “More People Cycling More Often” and the “Cycling Prospectus”, references to cycling have previously been noticable by their absence from major strategic transport initiatives.
Under the heading “Transport Issues” a number of issues and problems are identified as needing to be addressed. These include “Concerns with road safety, particularly accidents involving young people cyclists and pedestrians” and “concerns that a reliance on car use is contributing to a rise in obesity and related illnesses”
The draft plan identifies 5 emerging “core principles”. These are called One System, High Speed ready; Place Shaping; Smart Futures; Inclusion; Asset Management. There are references to Cycling in Place Shaping and Asset Management; these are set out in italics below.
The section called Place Shaping states “Our ambition is to make our cities, towns and neighbourhoods more attractive places to live and work, with an emphasis on improving road safety, air quality, the health of residents and the image of places. Key means to deliver this core principle could include…..Promoting walking and cycling, and encouraging people to switch from the car for active travel for shorter journeys or to access the public transport network. We propose extensive, high quality segregated routes for cycling and quieter, safer streets; and
Creating safer roads and places for everyone, especially vulnerable road users such as the young, elderly, those with mobility problems and for people walking and cycling“.
The section called Asset Management states “Our ambition is to manage all our transport system – roads, bridges, street lights, public transport stations and shelters, footways and cycle routes – in a way that offers maximum value for money and meets the needs of users………we are particularly aware of the concerns about pot holes and road conditions and the damage that these can cause to vehicles, the danger to cyclists as well as damaged pavements affecting pedestrians”
More information on the Single Transport Plan can be found on the West Yorkshire Combined Authority website by following this link:- http://www.westyorks-ca.gov.uk/stp-survey/ Details of how to complete an online questionnaire about the proposals can be found on that site.