Councillors deny 'turning their backs' on sustainable transport

 

Council leaders have hit back against claims that local authorities are reneging on sustainable transport packages because they are allowed to ‘mark their own homework’.

The Campaign for Better Transport (CfBT) said the planning system is allowing councils to backtrack on agreed packages of transport measures linked to new roads because there are no checks and balances to ensure they are delivered in their entirety.

”Local
Norfolk County Hall

It said that because councils have the ability to sign off their own work, they are doing so before sustainable transport elements of a scheme have been implemented. This means that although new roads are completed, accompanying sustainable transport measures are being cancelled or delayed – without consequence.

Local groups campaigner for CfBT Chris Todd said: ‘This is a problem; councils are effectively being allowed to mark their own homework. The system needs to change so that they can no longer sign off their own schemes and are held to account for their failings.'

Cllr Martin Tett, the Local Government Association’s transport spokesperson, told Transport Network: ‘Councils are not turning their backs on providing sustainable transport solutions. However, they are doing what they can to combat poor air quality and invest in sustainable transport such as cycling, walking and bus travel.

‘However, when faced by competing and increasing demands on their budgets, and government transport funding that is uncertain and fragmented, they are ultimately limited in what they are able to do.’

CfBT pointed to Norwich, where Norfolk CC recently completed the new Northern Distributor Road (NDR) which is due to be fully open next month, albeit significantly overbudget. It said the road was given planning permission as part of a package of measures, including sustainable transport options, which had to be in place before the road could open. 

Although the legal requirements of a Development Consent Order (DCO) were for an action plan and feasibility study of promised measures, these have been delayed until after the road opens, therefore breaching the DCO, CfBT claims.

Independent environmental consultant Andrew Boswell has written to transport secretary Chris Grayling, asking him to investigate the case as a matter of urgency.

Martin Wilby, chairman of Norfolk’s Environment, Development and Transport Committee, told Transport Network: ‘It is ironic that Dr Boswell, who as a Green Party councillor opposed the road at every stage, is now carping about progress on measures that Norwich NDR helps make possible.

'In fact significant progress has already been made on all fronts, including major changes in the city centre that have benefited bus services, and a series of cycle route improvements – as well as improved access to city centre car parks.

‘If we had taken Dr Boswell’s advice, progress towards a 21st century, sustainable transport system for Norwich and its surrounds would be permanently stuck in the slow lane.'

Also see

Register now for full access


Register just once to get unrestricted, real-time coverage of the issues and challenges facing UK transport and highways engineers.

Full website content includes the latest news, exclusive commentary from leading industry figures and detailed topical analysis of the highways, transportation, environment and place-shaping sectors. Use the link below to register your details for full, free access.

Already a registered? Login

 
comments powered by Disqus
 
 
highways jobs

Project Engineers

North Yorkshire County Council
£24,313 to £34,788, dependent upon experience.
We are looking for Project Engineers to join our Highways and Transportation service based across North Yorkshire. North Yorkshire
Recuriter: North Yorkshire County Council

Improvement/Maintenance Managers

North Yorkshire County Council
£46,503, subject to pay award agreement
Are you an experienced professional looking for a management opportunity? North Yorkshire
Recuriter: North Yorkshire County Council

Engineering opportunities

North Yorkshire County Council
Ranging from £24,313 up to £34,788
Are you a qualified engineer starting out on your career? North Yorkshire
Recuriter: North Yorkshire County Council

Heritage Environment Officer

East Lindsey District Council
£30,756 - £35,229 per annum (Grade 7)
This is an exciting opportunity for an enthusiastic and motivated Heritage Environment Officer to join the Council Manby, Louth
Recuriter: East Lindsey District Council

Senior Project Engineer (Highways Laboratory Services Manager)

Derbyshire County Council
Grade 13 £39,867 - £43,282 per annum
Derbyshire County Council are looking for an enthusiastic, enterprising and experienced laboratory Manager Derbyshire
Recuriter: Derbyshire County Council

Head of Policy

National Parks England
£36,153 - £39,961 pa, pro rata (£28.9k for 28 hours per week)
Help us ensure that England’s National Parks remain a national treasure. London (Central), London (Greater)
Recuriter: National Parks England

Urban Traffic Control Engineer

Transport for Greater Manchester
£26,240.00 - £37,369.00 Per Annum
Have you ever thought about who runs the traffic signals in Greater Manchester? Greater Manchester
Recuriter: Transport for Greater Manchester

Environmental Health Officer/Graduate Environmental Health Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£32,473 - £41,657
Make it work for you. Make it your Camden.  Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Process Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£28,910 - £33,531
Make it work for you. Make it your Camden.  Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Parking Asset Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£28,910 - £33,531
We are seeking an Asset Officer who will be responsible for ensuring all on-street parking Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Waste Services Loader

East Lindsey District Council
£16,880 - 17,681 per annum (Grade 2)
An exciting opportunity has become available to join the Council's Waste Services department in the role of a Waste Loader Louth, Lincolnshire
Recuriter: East Lindsey District Council

Food Safety Environmental Health Officer

Camden London Borough Council
£35,913 - £41,657
As an Environmental Health Officer within Environmental Health, Business and Consumer Services your focus will be food safety issues. Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Approvals and Consents Manager

Transport for Greater Manchester
£48,759.00 - £54,882.00 Per Annum
You will be responsible for the management and delivery of Approvals and Consents for Metrolink development Greater Manchester
Recuriter: Transport for Greater Manchester

Deputy Head of Service – Street Services

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£52,494 - £55,569
An exciting opportunity has arisen for a Deputy Head of Service Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

ECONOMIC PROJECTS OFFICER

Melton Borough Council
Salary £23,866 to £33,136 per annum
We are looking for an ambitious and proactive person enthusiastic about regeneration, town centre and development projects Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire,
Recuriter: Melton Borough Council

Environmental Crime Officer

East Lindsey District Council
£19,446 - £22,401 per annum (Grade 4)
We are looking for 2 people to join our Enforcement Team to perform a new innovative role at an exciting time within the department. Manby, Louth
Recuriter: East Lindsey District Council

Pest Control Officer

Brent Council
£25,746 - £27,342 p.a. inc.
Salary range
Recuriter: Brent Council

Principal Traffic Engineer

Telford & Wrekin Council
£34,106 - £37,107 per annum
This is an exciting opportunity to join Telford & Wrekin Council’s Network Management Team Telford, Shropshire
Recuriter: Telford & Wrekin Council

Textile Recycling Bank Development Manager

TRAID
£36,000 per annum
This senior role will develop TRAID's clothes recycling bank network and build partnerships with stakeholders from local authorities to commercials. London (Greater)
Recuriter: TRAID