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Sustainable Transport
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TOPIC: Neighbourhood Plans - will they help to achieve sustainable transport?

Neighbourhood Plans - will they help to achieve sustainable transport? #1

I, together with AR-Urbanism, am helping to produce the Neighbourhood Plan for East Grinstead (West Sussex). There are opportunities in the town to achieve some switch away from car dependency, at least for some types of trip, and it appears there is some support for this amongst the local population.

The question is whether, and if so how, the Neighboourhood Plan could drive such a change. Most powers and responsibilities in relation to transport reside at the County Council and District Council level. It is to be hoped that positive local opinion will be listened to, but East Grinstead will inevitably be in competiton for scarece resources with other parts of the County.

Does anyone have experience of this dilemma being addressed in other Neighbourhood Plans?

Re: Neighbourhood Plans - will they help to achieve sustainable transport? #2

There is a perception that major transport projects are difficult to manage in Britain.
Major over-runs on the Channel Tunnel, the Jubilee Line Extension and the West Coast Main
Line redevelopment are seen as the rule, rather than the exception. Fourthly, the country’s
planning system is notoriously slow and inefficient. The present government has published
a number of documents about the potential damage inflicted by the painful amount of time
taken, for example, to allow Heathrow Terminal 5 to go ahead. Finally, governance arrangements in Britain are highly centralised by international standards. All major projects are subject to approval in the Treasury, which means that the decision about every rail investment, tramway, guided bus, bridge, tunnel or by-pass willpass across a desk in SW1.The conclusion that flows from this is that, while transport is certainly not solely a British problem, Britain’s approach and experience often differs markedly from that of other countries. How can we improve our transport systems if we don't get the essential guidance and funding required ? At the rate we are going we will not meet targets.
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