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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........ better buses
Buses will be cleaner, more comfortable and more reliable, a real and attractive alternative to using cars. We are challenging the industry to produce a bus design fit for the next century. We will build on Quality Partnerships, local partnerships to deliver better bus services. We will ensure that the passenger gets a real say in influencing bus services in their local area. Quality Contracts, where there is local demand, will mark a real change from the present and provide the opportunity for the development of integrated networks.

The New Deal for transport means:

  • buses to lead our transport revolution for the 21st Century;

  • upgraded Quality Partnerships between local authorities and bus operators:

  • quicker, more reliable services;

  • higher quality vehicles with staff trained in customer care;

  • easy-to-use buses - to help access for disabled and elderly people and parents with young children;

  • Quality Contracts - exclusive contracts for bus routes to ensure integrated networks;

  • half-price or lower concessionary fares for elderly people;

  • special funding for buses in the countryside.

..... better trains
Through a new Strategic Rail Authority, we will bring vision to the privatised railway and we will ensure that it meets the needs of passengers and the freight customers it serves. Passengers rightly demand better services and more accountability. We are willing to re-negotiate existing rail franchises where this would secure benefits for passengers and value for money for the taxpayer.

The New Deal for transport means:

  • a new Strategic Rail Authority to:

  • bring together passenger and freight interests;

  • promote better integration and interchange;

  • provide strategic vision;

  • get better value for public subsidy in terms of fares and network benefits;

  • new passenger dividends from passenger railway companies;

  • tougher regulation to serve the public interest:

  • ensuring that the private sector honours its commitments to deliver a modern and efficient railway.

A New Deal for the public transport passenger

  • more and better buses and trains, with staff trained in customer care

  • a stronger voice for the passenger

  • better information, before and when travelling; including a national public transport information system by 2000

  • better interchanges and better connections

  • enhanced networks with simplified fares and better marketing, including more through-ticketing and travelcards

  • more reliable buses through priority measures and reduced congestion

  • cash boost for rural transport

  • half price or lower fares for elderly people on buses

  • improved personal security when travelling

  • easy-access public transport - helping disabled and elderly people, and making it easier for everyone to use

......... better protection for the environment
We want to preserve and enhance our environment: the places where we live and work, our built and natural heritage and our richly diverse countryside. We will be more effective in our stewardship of natural resources and are determined to build from the historic turning point of the special United Nations' conference at Kyoto, where the developed countries agreed to legally binding targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We have already made an important step forward under our Presidency of the European Union (EU), reaching agreement on how to share the EU's target between Member States.

We want to see greener, cleaner vehicles that have less impact on our environment. We want to see better public transport and we will make it easier to walk and cycle. But these alone will not be sufficient to tackle the congestion and pollution that is caused by road traffic: we need to reduce the rate of road traffic growth. We also want to see an absolute reduction in traffic in those places and streets where its environmental damage is worst.

The New Deal for transport means:

  • a major effort to reduce greenhouse gases;

  • greener, more fuel efficient vehicles through:

  • better standards and tax incentives;

  • Cleaner Vehicles Task Force;

  • better stewardship of the nation's cultural and environmental heritage;

  • tackling transport noise and new powers to enforce noise controls at airports.

......... better safety and personal security
We want people to be able to travel safely and without fear for their personal security. Pedestrians and cyclists should not be intimidated by traffic; parents should not have to drive their children to school because they worry about their safety; women and older people should feel safe to use public transport after dusk.

The New Deal for transport means:

  • root and branch review of transport safety;

  • new road safety strategy and targets to reduce accidents;

  • safer routes to schools;

  • major review of speed policy;

  • safer public transport;

  • changes in drivers' hours legislation;

  • review of the role and function of the British Transport Police;

  • Secure Stations Scheme.

......... better safety and personal security
Because access to transport can be a matter of social justice we want to see high quality public transport designed for everyone to use easily. We want to tackle the downward spiral of disadvantage in the most deprived areas in the country, where difficulties in getting to jobs combine with other social and economic problems. Better transport is an essential building block of our New Deal for Communities which will extend economic opportunity, tackle social exclusion and improve neighbourhood management and quality of life in some of the most rundown neighbourhoods in the country.

As well as prosperous towns and cities we want a thriving countryside in which there are real jobs and opportunities for the people who live there. So where there is new development it should be planned in a way which supports existing communities. We know that transport needs vary widely within and between rural areas. The problems of remote island communities in Scotland are very different from rural villages in the South East of England. So will be the solutions.

The New Deal for transport means:

  • more local diversity and vitality through better planning;

  • opening up job opportunities:

  • through transport supporting regeneration;

  • more and better buses;

  • tackling isolation in the countryside through:

  • support for local facilities;

  • special funding for buses;

  • support for community projects to improve accessibility;

  • tackling the transport needs of women, disabled and elderly people and people on low incomes;

  • reuniting communities cut in half by traffic:

  • through traffic management, calming and traffic reduction;

  • monitoring the impacts of policies on different groups in society.

........ moving goods sustainably
We are building a new partnership with business to improve the competitiveness of industry for the 21st Century. We want a reliable and efficient transport system that supports prosperity, to provide the jobs and wealth we all want. But the growth in freight risks being met at the expense of our environment. This is why we want to reduce the extent to which a healthier economy results in high levels of road traffic growth. We want to see a real increase in the use of rail freight, inland waterways and coastal shipping.

The New Deal for transport means:

  • a new Strategic Rail Authority to promote rail freight and its infrastructure;

  • Quality Partnerships for freight between local authorities and operators on lorry routing and delivery hours;

  • less damage to roads and the environment through greater use of 6 axle lorries and keeping unsuitable lorries off unsuitable roads;

  • working in partnership with the freight industry to improve best practice;

  • impounding illegally operated lorries;

  • facilitating shipping as an efficient and environmentally friendly means of carrying our trade;

  • extending freight grants to include coastal and short sea shipping.

...... sharing decisions and modernising local democracy
We have made good progress in meeting the demand for decentralisation of power through our proposals for devolution. Different parts of the UK will be able to consider their own transport priorities reflecting their different transport needs. We also want to revitalise local democracy and strengthen the relationship between local and central Government. We will bring power closer to people and play our part in building effective partnerships.

We want local people and business to have a real say and real influence over transport. We will modernise the way in which transport is planned regionally and locally. We will expect local authorities when preparing their local transport plans to consult widely and involve their communities and transport operators in setting priorities for improving transport. In approving local transport plans, we will want to be sure that they fully reflect this consultation and that the views of local people have made a difference.

The New Deal for transport means:

  • many decisions on transport issues to be devolved to the Scottish Parliament, the Welsh Assembly and the Assembly for Northern Ireland;

  • strengthened planning arrangements in English regions to secure integration between transport and land use planning - including the role of airports, ports, railways and roads in the regions;

  • Mayor for London and the Greater London Authority to produce an integrated transport strategy, improve air quality and act on noise;

  • decision-making on transport to be more accountable to local people.

....... everyone doing their bit
Our New Deal for transport sets the framework for change and we will provide the new powers and extra support needed to make it happen. But we cannot do it alone. We want to create partnerships at all levels, to help business, local authorities and local communities to come together and respond to the challenge.

Much will depend on each one of us as individuals. For example, a significant reduction in car commuting and the 'school run' would help to tackle peak-time congestion. We cannot leave it to others to bring about the changes that are needed. We have a shared responsibility. But great sacrifices aren't called for. It doesn't take much to make a difference - if we all left the car at home just once out of the ten or so shopping and leisure trips we make from home each month, we would deal with most of the projected increase in traffic this year7.

The New Deal for transport means:

  • Government departments taking the lead in introducing 'green transport plans' - plans which help to cut down on car use;

  • local authorities, business, community organisations, schools and hospitals encouraged to produce their own green transport plans;

  • a major national awareness campaign;

  • new initiatives on school journeys;

  • individuals/families/communities considering their own travel habits.

....... delivering the New Deal for transport
In this White Paper we set out the New Deal for transport. In Part II we look more closely at the problems that we have inherited and at why it is so important to set the right framework for change and have clear objectives. We describe the difference that our policies will make. We commit ourselves to challenging targets and rigorous monitoring and set out in detail the measures needed to secure changes on the ground.

In Part III we explain how the New Deal for transport will be supported by a new framework for action at national, regional and local levels and by getting the right balance between incentives, voluntary initiatives, best practice and economic instruments. We consider how we can all do our bit to produce a difference, explaining how the New Deal for transport supports and encourages local and individual action.

1 Information on the major trends in domestic transport is provided in "Transport Trends", Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions, TSO, 1998. ISBN 0-11-551987-4.

2 "Traffic in towns. A study of the long term problems of traffic in urban areas", HMSO 1963.

3 £15 billion taken from "Moving forward - a business strategy for transport", CBI 1995. Other estimates include £7 billion from National Economic Research Associates, July 1997.

4 and "Keeping Scotland Moving: A Scottish Transport Green Paper", Cm 3565, 1997. A summary of the main proposals in "Transport: the Way Forward" is provided in Annex D.

5" Developing an Integrated Transport Policy. An invitation to contribute", Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions, Department of the Environment for Northern Ireland, The Scottish Office and The Welsh Office, 1997. A summary of responses is provided in Annex B, with a fuller breakdown in the report on the consultation that we are publishing separately.

6 "Transport and the Environment - Developments since 1994", Twentieth Report of the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution, 1997. Cm 3752. ISBN 0-10-137522-0. A summary of the Report's main conclusions is provided in Annex C.

  • calculated from National Travel Survey 1994/96 data for home based journeys for the purpose of shopping, leisure, personal business (eg trips to the bank/hairdresser) and to see friends and relatives somewhere other than where they live

Chapter 2 - Sustainable Transport
The New Deal for transport

Better Health

More Jobs and a strong economy

A better environment

A fairer,more inclusive society

A modern, integrated transport system

Changing travel habits

Technology taking the strain

The new deal for transport - making a difference

Making a difference: on climate change

Making a difference: on traffic and congestion

Making a difference: on local air quality

Making a difference: a more inclusive society

Making a difference: through extending the range of targets

Sustainable development meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

From the Brundtland Report, 19871

A modern transport system is vital to our country's future. We need a transport system which supports our policies for more jobs and a strong economy, which helps increase prosperity and tackles social exclusion. We also need a transport system which doesn't damage our health and provides a better quality of life now - for everyone - without passing onto future generations a poorer world. This is what we mean by sustainable transport and why we need a New Deal.
The New Deal for transport
We don't underestimate the difficulties. There is much that needs to be done to recover from the legacy we inherited. The lack of a strategic and integrated approach in recent years has made many of the problems worse. But our New Deal for transport sets out a framework for change.

It will be supported by clear and challenging targets, setting out what we want to achieve and by when. By publishing indicators we will be able to measure progress in a way that is clear and comprehensive. It will enable us all to see what is working and what more needs to be done.

It is a long term strategy to deliver sustainable transport. It is also a strategy for modernisation that harnesses the latest developments in technology. It begins in this Parliament, looks towards the next and sets out a programme for improving our quality of life for years to come. But to meet the country's needs, it must and will make a difference now as well as in the future. This Chapter sets out the framework for change and explains what that difference could be.
Better health
The way we travel is making us a less healthy nation.

Coronary heart disease is the biggest killer of adults in this country. Part of the blame is that we drive too much when we could walk or cycle. More exercise would help to reach the proposed target for reducing coronary heart disease and strokes in England, set out in "Our Healthier Nation"2.

Road traffic is a major contributor to air pollution. Up to 24,000 vulnerable people are estimated to die prematurely each year, and similar numbers are admitted to hospital, because of exposure to air pollution, much of which is due to road traffic3. Tighter standards and advances in vehicle design have helped to reduce those emissions which cause the greatest concern but in the longer term these gains could be at risk if traffic growth continues unchecked. Even this downward trend in emissions will not be sufficient in all places to reach our local air quality objectives set for 20054. We must do everything we can to cut this loss of life by improving air quality, including further controls on vehicle emissions which have brought about significant reductions in emissions without imposing unreasonable burdens on car users or on business.

Motorists themselves and their passengers are at most risk from exhaust fumes. Recent studies5 have shown that cars offer little or no protection against the pollutants generated by traffic. Car drivers face pollution levels inside a car two to three times higher than those experienced by pedestrians. Car commuters may receive more than a fifth of their total exposure to some pollutants from their daily journey to and from work, as well as adding to the pollution on our streets.

Although serious road casualties have declined, too many people are still killed or seriously injured on our roads (more than 120 people every day in 1997) and in other transport accidents. Some in society are more at risk. Children are particularly vulnerable and those from disadvantaged backgrounds are more likely to die as a result of road accidents than children from more affluent homes6.

But the threat to children's health from the way we travel goes beyond accidents and pollution. Because of worries about safety, many parents now shuttle children to school by car when previously they would have made their own way on foot or by bike. The British Medical Association has warned7 that the effects on children's physical health and mental development could be serious.

Traffic contributes substantially to the noise that has become part of the everyday environment and can make many people's lives a misery. There is now some evidence8 that this noise disturbs sleep and affects performance in school children and that the stress this noise causes may increase the risk of developing chronic heart disease and psychiatric disorders. Noise is an important issue for those living close to airports and under flight paths and near to busy roads.

The New Deal for transport therefore sets the framework to:

  • reduce pollution from transport;

  • improve air quality;

  • encourage healthy lifestyles by reducing reliance on cars, and making it easier to walk and cycle more;

  • reduce noise and vibration from transport;

  • improve transport safety for users, those who work in the industry and the general public.

More jobs and a strong economy
The transport system moves goods and people and helps to make the economy tick. Good transport is needed to get people to work and many jobs are based on extensive travel. Transport is also a major contributor to the economy in its own right, currently employing around 1.7 million people9.

We rely on efficient transport to ensure that goods and services are distributed throughout the UK and exported overseas. Yet in recent years investment in transport has failed to maintain the physical quality of the system, allowing valuable assets to deteriorate. There is a backlog of neglect of railway stations, track and bridges10; and roads in England and Wales are in their worst state for twenty years11.

More than four-fifths of domestic freight tonnage goes by road. But traffic congestion now costs the nation billions of pounds each year and with traffic forecasts pointing to more congestion these costs can only increase. Important parts of our motorways suffer daily from traffic jams but building more roads can just encourage more traffic.

Modern business practices put firms at even greater risk from delay and congestion. 'Just in time' production, for example, means that companies no longer hold large stocks of raw materials, components or finished products on site, depending instead on their suppliers meeting their needs at short notice. They rely heavily on an efficient road network.

On the busiest roads in our cities journey times in the rush hour could lengthen dramatically, by as much as 70% over the next 20 years. Already in outer London one-fifth of the time taken to make a journey during rush hours is spent stationary. In central London, at any time of the day, drivers face the prospect of spending a third of their journey at a standstill12. Even our country towns at the busiest times can grind to a halt through congestion.

Rail freight tonnage has dropped by more than a quarter over the last decade, although the tide has turned in recent years. The lack of investment in rail infrastructure has led to increased delays and unreliability.

Air transport has been growing dramatically. But we haven't made the best use of the airports in our regions and we need to improve public transport to all our airports. Shipping is one of the most environmentally sustainable means of transport, carrying 95% of our growing international trade by tonnage. The UK is a world centre of excellence for shipping and maritime-related activities. But recent decades have seen a massive decline in the size of our merchant fleet.

The New Deal for transport therefore sets the framework to:

  • improve reliability for journeys in all modes, helping to support business and economic growth;

  • improve links with international markets;

  • support regeneration and the vitality of urban and rural areas;

  • make more efficient use of the transport system;

  • promote more sustainable UK transport industries.

A better environment
The way we travel is changing our environment for the worse. The 'skyglow' from light pollution and noise from transport have changed much of our countryside. Road construction and car parking have made heavy demands on land, a finite resource. In England alone, in the second half of the 1980s an area equivalent to the size of Bristol was taken for road building and parking13.

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