The UK Government’s Transport Decarbonisation Plan included a commitment to revive the Local Transport Plan (LTP) process in England. This is potentially a crucial opportunity to press for a Low Traffic Future in your area.
In particular, the Department for Transport said that LTPs would once again become the main mechanism for deciding how much funding each council would receive for local transport projects – the better their LTP, the more funding they would get.
DfT has also said that statutory guidance (which councils will have to follow when preparing their LTPs) will tell them that their LTPs needed to set out their ambitions for:
- Improving cycling and walking conditions;
- Improving bus services;
- Delivering electric vehicle charging points; and (crucially), setting Quantifiable Carbon Reduction (QCR) targets.
- Councils therefore have a really positive incentive to be ambitious, in order to maximise their overall transport funding allocation,
Unfortunately, the Government has repeatedly missed its own deadlines for publishing the LTP guidance – they originally intended to publish a final version by Spring 2022. Yet as of January 2024, they still haven’t even published a consultation draft.
Meanwhile, England’s local transport authorities (the bodies who are legally required to draw up LTPs, i.e. the combined authorities, county councils and non-metropolitan unitary authorities) have started updating their LTPs, based on their understanding of what the final guidance is likely to say.
The Low Traffic Future Alliance has therefore published its own guide for councillors and campaigners – together with a summary version – on what we think a good LTP should include.
We also ran a series of regional workshops around England – called ‘Greening transport in your area‘ – to brief anyone keen to shape their Local Transport Plan, to make sure it is fit for a Low Traffic Future. See this presentation explaining the LTP process itself. Or click here to see the notes and other presentations from these workshops – they are all different, and well worth reading!