Response to City Mobility Plan Consultation April 2020

SUMMARY

  • Revise the plan to take account of changes following the COVID-19 pandemic. Implementation will need to be reassessed, and there are likely to be opportunities to make faster progress towards some of the long-term objectives
  • Ensure a safe infrastructure for cycling, but prioritise pedestrians and public transport at all stages
  • Revise transport and economic priorities so the health benefits of lower emissions in the lockdown are retained in the long-term; introduce restrictive measures to maintain lower volumes of traffic in city streets
  • Any increase in private car use, because of lower risk of infection, should be carefully managed: ensure the focus remains on delivering the CMP’s long-term environmental and health benefits
  • Accelerate the switch to EVs, especially buses, taxis and delivery vehicles
  • Revise the parking proposals: reverse planned increases, and cut spaces in the centre and surrounding areas to encourage a lower level of private car use and take account of more people working from home
  • The ‘mass rapid transport system’, as conceived, is not comprehensive – or rapid – enough to deliver a “car-free” future: it should be more ambitious
  • In particular, options for light rail should be urgently explored with potential partners
  • The LEZ proposal should be expanded to extend the greatest protection from harmful emissions to residents beyond the central business and tourism district, and should include Queen Street and York Place
  • A robust and radical approach is needed to enforce the 20mph speed limits
  • We support pedestrianisation of streets – but only if an effective framework is put in place to protect them from over-use by events or activities of a commercial or tourist nature
  • There should be no return to the unsustainable levels of tourism and commercial exploitation of public space of recent years: diversify the economy away from over-dependence on these, and limit use of public space to the existing small number of established large-scale events.
  • Focus instead on local businesses and economic sectors which bring sustainable, long-term added value to the city economy
  • We ask all parties on the Council to work together to deliver consistent planning decisions which ensure that private sector activity aligns fully with the city’s long-term environmental and economic aims.

The full submission can be viewed here