Responding to the publication today of the Government’s Transport Decarbonisation Plan, Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Chief Executive Victoria Hills said:
“The Government’s Transport Decarbonisation Plan, published today, contains a range of great proposals - including an aim that half of all journeys in towns and cities will be cycled or walked by 2030 - that will help in reducing transport’s greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.
“In particular, the RTPI welcomes the government’s recognition that the planning system has an important role to play in creating developments that promote a shift towards sustainable transport networks.
“Our research published earlier this year stressed that developments and transport planning must work closely together to plan, design and deliver new developments with the aim of delivering ‘Carbon Negative Growth’. New developments should feature net-zero transport from the start whilst also contributing to a wider reduction in emissions through the encouragement of reduced travel demand and the incorporation of alternative and greener methods of travel.
“It is also encouraging to see discussions are taking place to explore how the planning system can be designed to facilitate better collaboration and planning for growth across local authority boundaries. The RTPI has previously called for Green Growth Boards to deliver joined-up strategies on transport as well as other key issues such as economic growth, climate action and nature recovery.
“We are also pleased to see in the plan some imaginative ideas such as the adoption of ’20-minute community’ principles, the reallocation of roads to cycling, walking and green space, the creation of more ‘school streets’, and better facilities for cyclists on trains.
“However, the RTPI is still concerned that too much emphasis is being put on ‘doing the same things differently’ – we must aim for an even more radical transformation of how we plan, design and use space and how we live and move around if we are to reduce the need to travel and encourage people to shift from private vehicles to more active, public and shared modes of transport.”