A new Deal for Transport Better for Everyone The Government's White Paper on the Future of Transport Contents Foreword Acknowledgements Scope of the White Paper part I chapter 1: a new Deal for Transport part II chapter 2: Sustainable Transport Chapter

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A New Deal for Transport

Better for Everyone
The Government's White Paper on the Future of Transport


Scope of the White Paper

Chapter 1: A New Deal for Transport

Chapter 2: Sustainable Transport

Chapter 3: Integrated Transport

Chapter 4: Making it Happen

Chapter 5: Sharing Responsibility
There is now a consensus for radical change in transport policy. The previous Government's green paper paved the way with recognition that we needed to improve public transport and reduce dependence on the car. Businesses, unions, environmental organisations and individuals throughout Britain share that analysis.

This White Paper builds on that foundation.

For the last two decades, the ideology of privatisation, competition and deregulation has dominated transport policy. Bus and rail services have declined whilst traffic growth has resulted in more congestion and worsening pollution.

This White Paper fulfills our manifesto commitment to create a better, more integrated transport system to tackle the problems of congestion and pollution we have inherited. It is timely. In its Green Paper the previous Government recognised that we could not go on as before, building more and more new roads to accommodate the growth in car traffic. With our new obligations to meet targets on climate change, the need for a new approach is urgent.

As a car driver, I recognise that motorists will not readily switch to public transport unless it is significantly better and more reliable. The main aim of this White Paper is to increase personal choice by improving the alternatives and to secure mobility that is sustainable in the long term.

Better public transport will encourage more people to use it. But the car will remain important to the mobility of millions of people and the numbers of people owning cars will continue to grow. So we also want to make life better for the motorist. The priority will be maintaining existing roads rather than building new ones and better management of the road network to improve reliability.

More bus lanes, properly enforced, will make buses quicker and more reliable. Even a small increase in the numbers of bus passengers will transform the economics of the bus industry, allowing higher levels of investment in new buses and new and more frequent services.

This White Paper isn't just about national policy. Local transport plans will create a partnership between local councils, businesses, operators and users. Local initiatives such as safer routes to schools will give parents more confidence in letting their children make their own way. CCTV cameras in car parks and bus stations will make users, especially women, feel safer.

We have had to make hard choices on how to combat congestion and pollution while persuading people to use their cars a little less - and public transport a little more. And we have devised imaginative new ways of raising money from transport for better transport. That is the New Deal for transport which I believe the country wants.

The last transport White Paper was a generation ago. But the economy, technology and attitudes to transport and the environment are changing so rapidly that we should not wait another generation before a new White Paper. The new Commission for Integrated Transport will bring together transport users, the private sector, local authorities and others to make recommendations to Ministers.

This White Paper reflects the Government's commitment to giving transport the highest possible priority. We now look to others - companies, individuals, employees and local authorities - to join us in shaping a new future for sustainable transport in the UK.

Chapter 1:

Congestion- courtesy of Alan Laughlin, City of Edinburgh Council

Chapter 2:

Cyclist - courtesy of the Highways Agency

Chapter 3:

Artist's impression of Trafalgar Square -courtesy of Foster and Partners

Cycle lane, National Cycle Network map - SUSTRANS

Edinburgh Greenway bus lane - courtesy of Alan Laughlin, City of Edinburgh Council

Birkenhead bus station - courtesy of Merseytravel

Wheelchair user -GMPTE1998

Freight on inland waterway - courtesy of British Waterways Photolibrary

Luton Airport - courtesy of Luton Airport

Eurostar train - courtesy of Eurostar (IJK) Ltd.

'Piggyback' lorry- courtesy of Freight Transport Association

Northern Line Train - courtesy of London Transport

City of Edinburgh Council

Chapter 4:

Vehicle Inspectors - courtesy of the Vehicle Inspectorate

Solar powered car - courtesy of Honda (UK)

Chapter 5:

Smiling children -SUSTRANS

Annex E:

Core trunk road network - map courtesy of the Highways Agency

Annex F:

Rail network pinch-points - courtesy of Railtrack

Scope of the White Paper
This is a United Kingdom White Paper. It sets out a new approach to transport policy which has relevance throughout the United Kingdom, and it embodies new, modern thinking on integrating transport with other aspects of Government policy. Some of the discussion in the text relates only to England. But the guiding principles apply throughout the UK.

Different parts of the UK have differing transport needs. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will be able to consider their own transport priorities under the new arrangements for a Scottish Parliament, a National Assembly for Wales and an Assembly for Northern Ireland. The Secretary of State for Scotland is publishing a White Paper on integrated transport policy in Scotland that sets out our transport policy for Scotland consistent with the principles in this paper. Separate documents will also be published for Wales and Northern Ireland.

In Northern Ireland, responsibilities that fall to local authorities in Great Britain for roads, transport, land use planning and the environment rest with the Department of the Environment for Northern Ireland and references to local authorities in this document should be read accordingly.

This White Paper sets the framework within which our detailed policies will be taken forward. Some of the proposals will require legislation which will be brought forward as soon as Parliamentary time allows.

A number of supporting documents which set out fuller details of the proposals highlighted in this White Paper will be published and are listed at Annex A. A summary of the responses to our consultation on integrated transport policy is at Annex B and a fuller summary is being published to accompany this White Paper.

Chapter 1 - A New Deal for Transport
Lives shaped by transport

Transport has enriched our lives but at a cost ........

....... which keeps going up

There is less choice ..........

....... and people want change

A new approach: A New Deal for transport

........ better places to live

.......... local transport plans

........ better buses

..... better trains

......... better protection for the environment

......... better safety and personal security

......... better safety and personal security

........ moving goods sustainably

...... sharing decisions and modernising local democracy

....... everyone doing their bit

....... delivering the New Deal for transport

Lives shaped by transport
Our quality of life depends on transport. Most of us travel every day, even if only locally. And we need an efficient transport system to support a strong and prosperous economy. But in turn, the way we travel is damaging our towns and cities and harming our countryside. As demand for transport grows, we are even changing the very climate of our planet.

Cars in particular have revolutionised the way we live, bringing great flexibility and widening horizons. And we do not want to restrict car ownership-with our vision for a prosperous Britain where prosperity is shared by all we expect more people to be able to afford a car. But the way we are using our cars has a price - for our health, for the economy and for the environment1.

Transport policies dominated by the short-term have reduced choice, for the public transport passenger and for motorists. The mood is for change. Business is concerned about the costs of congestion. People want the existing transport system to work better. They want more choice and a new emphasis on protecting the environment and their health.

Simply building more and more roads is not the answer to traffic growth. 'Predict and provide' didn't work. Privatisation and deregulation of public transport were key features of the last decade. But they failed the passenger because they fragmented public transport networks and ignored the public interest. This is why we promised an integrated transport policy to fight congestion and pollution.

In this White Paper, we set out our integrated transport policy. We explain how we will extend choice in transport and secure mobility in a way that supports sustainable development. It is our New Deal for transport - a transport system that is safe, efficient, clean and fair.
Transport has enriched our lives but at a cost ........
Over 35 years ago, the Government of the day commissioned a study into the problems posed by road traffic. The resulting 'Buchanan report'2 predicted that traffic would increase dramatically, with profound consequences for the environment and the way life was lived. It has. We cannot say that we weren't warned.

Congestion and unreliability of journeys add to the costs of business, undermining competitiveness particularly in our towns and cities where traffic is worst. The CBI has put the cost to the British economy at around £15 billion every year, some estimates are lower but agree that the cost to the nation runs into billions of pounds every year and is rising3. The convenience of the car is eroded by congestion and driving is increasingly stressful.

In the UK, emissions of CO2 from road transport are the fastest growing contributor to climate change - the greatest global environmental threat facing the international community. Climate change doesn't mean we will all enjoy pleasant Mediterranean summers: it threatens unpredictable extremes of weather with more frequent and intense storms, floods, droughts and rising sea levels.

Road traffic is also adding substantially to the local air pollution that is damaging our health and hastens the death of thousands each year. Contrary to popular opinion, drivers and their passengers are not protected from the pollution they create - the air inside a car can be more polluted than for the pedestrian on the pavement.

Road Traffic Forecasts

....... which keeps going up
With increasing prosperity, more people with driving licences and several million new households likely over the next two decades, we are faced with dramatic increases in traffic. Over the next 20 years car traffic could grow by more than a third. Van and lorry traffic is forecast to grow even faster.

We all know that unless something is done this means more traffic jams, not just in the cities but in country towns too. The tranquility of the countryside will be further eroded. Rush 'hours' will become longer. Driving will become even less of a pleasure and the costs to business will soar. There will be more damage to the environment and our health will suffer.

There is less choice ..........
Car ownership

Increasingly, people do not have real choices. For many people using a car is now no longer a choice but a necessity. Nowhere is this clearer than in the rural communities with no daily bus service. For those who rely on public transport it is all too often inadequate, suffering from declining standards and services. And as motoring costs fell in real terms, bus and rail fares have gone up.

Three in ten homes in Britain don't have a car - some thirteen million people. The advantages of owning a car aren't available to them. Even in homes with a car it is not always available to everyone. Increased traffic, and speed, have made our streets more threatening for pedestrians and cyclists. Children's freedom to play, or to walk or cycle to school unaccompanied has been severely curtailed. Twenty years ago, nearly one in three 5-10 year-olds made their own way to school. Now only one child in nine does. We walk less than we used to and cycling, other than for leisure, is mostly left to a few enthusiasts.

In Britain, we have fewer cars but our cars do more mileage and we use public transport less than in most other countries in the European Union. It is not surprising that our roads are among the most congested. But it doesn't have to be like this.

....... and people want change
People know we cannot build our way out of congestion with new roads. The previous Government, too, came to see the problems - the growth in road traffic was at the heart of its national debate on transport. Its subsequent Green Paper "Transport: the Way Forward"4 highlighted the dilemma of road transport - on the one hand the advantages it can bring but, on the other, the environmental damage it causes. Change was proposed - a new approach to transport policy that was not led by road building.

People feel the time for action is long overdue. The results of our consultation5 last year confirm the overwhelming desire for Government to show leadership. People said they want more choice on whether to use their cars and more reliable journeys when they do; they want a better public transport system and one that doesn't let them down; they want better protection for the environment and they want less pollution because they are worried about their health.

Early in this Parliament we received a comprehensive report on transport and the environment from the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution6. The Commission, too, raised concerns that "action has been too little and too slow" and warned that continuing as previously would have consequences that were environmentally, economically and socially unacceptable.

We agree. That is why we acted quickly and announced a fundamental review of transport policy. This White Paper is the culmination of that work and the widespread consultation that accompanied it.

A new approach: A New Deal for transport
We face an enormous challenge to deliver our vision of a transport system that supports sustainable development. We need a new approach, bringing together the public and private sectors in a partnership which benefits everyone. We want to ensure that companies have incentives to provide new services and raise standards, that taxpayers' money is spent wisely to make public transport available for all and that services are properly regulated in the public interest.

We have not put everything on hold until this White Paper. We are already working to extend the range of transport choices across the country and are investing more in public transport to improve its quantity and quality. We have secured new and imaginative ways of funding to modernise our transport system. We are giving high priority to maintaining and managing the nation's transport infrastructure. Taken together, this public and private investment represents a substantial increase in resources for transport. More investment in public transport and more people using it will work together to create a virtuous circle, generating more revenues, further investment and even better services.

We want transport to contribute to our quality of life not detract from it. The way forward is through an integrated transport policy. By this we mean:

  • integration within and between different types of transport - so that each contributes its full potential and people can move easily between them;

  • integration with the environment - so that our transport choices support a better environment;

  • integration with land use planning - at national, regional and local level, so that transport and planning work together to support more sustainable travel choices and reduce the need to travel;

  • integration with our policies for education, health and wealth creation - so that transport helps to make a fairer, more inclusive society.

This is our New Deal for transport ........
........ better places to live
We want a transport system that meets the needs of people and business at an affordable cost and produces better places in which to live and work. We want to cut congestion, improve our towns and cities and encourage vitality and diversity locally; helping to reduce the need to travel and avoid the urban sprawl that has lengthened journeys and consumed precious countryside. We will revise the planning guidance we issue to bring together thinking about better transport and a better environment at the planning stage.

The New Deal for transport means:

  • cleaner air to breathe by tackling traffic fumes;

  • thriving town centres by cutting the stranglehold of traffic;

  • quality places to live where people are the priority;

  • increasing prosperity backed by a modern transport system;

  • reduced rural isolation by connecting people with services and increasing mobility;

  • easier and safer to walk and cycle;

  • revitalised towns and cities through better town planning.

.......... local transport plans
We want to see integrated transport locally as well as nationally, which is why we are introducing local transport plans as a core part of our proposals. Local authorities will set out in these plans their strategies for transport. There will be new tools to tackle congestion and pollution which will provide local authorities with new and dedicated sources of funding for transport measures. But we are not relinquishing responsibility for what happens locally, we will need to be satisfied that these new powers will be used as part of clear transport strategies that have the backing of local communities.

We want more priority for public transport, improved facilities for people to interchange when travelling and better information for passengers. We want bus lanes that are properly enforced so that buses are more reliable as well as more frequent. We will improve choice and reliability of journeys in ways which safeguard the environment and the health of the nation. We will change the focus of road investment to reflect the needs of all road users, giving top priority to maintaining and managing our existing roads and getting them to work better.

We will put greater emphasis on listening to transport users - there will be a New Deal for the public transport passenger and a New Deal for the motorist. We will continue to work with motoring organisations to improve the service offered by trunk roads and, through investing in technology, we will improve the speed and efficiency of customer services provided by Government agencies.

The New Deal for transport means:

  • new local transport plans:

  • integrated transport strategies for local needs;

  • local targets eg for improving air quality, road safety, public transport and road traffic reduction;

  • more certainty of funding;

  • greater use of traffic management;

  • new powers including road user charging and levies on parking to tackle traffic jams and traffic growth;

  • new sources of additional funding for local transport: better for the environment and better for business;

  • better interchanges;

  • tackling the 'pinch-points' in transport networks that lead to congestion;

  • new airports policy and stronger role for regional airports;

  • new independent Commission for Integrated Transport (CfIT) to advise on integration at the national level and act as a force for change.

A New Deal for the motorist

  • improved management of the trunk road network to reduce delays, through eg Regional Traffic Control Centres in England

  • investment focused on improving reliability of journeys

  • better maintained roads - increased resources both locally and nationally

  • updated Highways Agency's Road User's Charter to give more emphasis to customer service

  • more help for the motorist if their car breaks down on a motorway

  • reducing the disruption caused by utilities' street works

  • improved road safety and safer cars

  • quality information for the driver - before and during journeys

  • dealing with car crime

  • more secure car parks

  • better information and protection when buying a used car

  • action on 'cowboy' wheelclampers

  • more fuel-efficient cars

  • less congestion on our roads and less pollution in our cars

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