About this good practice
The Active Travel Scheme is part of a wider roadmap that the UK government introduced as part of a strategy to help tackle Covid-19. The scheme is aimed at preparing the transport network for the critical role it will play in emerging from the Covid-19 crisis. The need to maintain social distancing means that the public transport systems cannot go back to where it left off. Taking into to account the 2-meter social distancing rule – there would only be effective capacity for one in ten passengers in many parts of the network. The Active Travel scheme is aimed at getting Britain moving again, while not overcrowding our transport network.
Initially there were short term temporary measures in place to facilitate social distancing which included: -
• Temporary removal of parking spaces
• Widening of footpaths
• More space around bus stops
• Pop-up cycle lanes
• Supporting measures and communications
The Active Travel schemes in Coventry and across the West Midlands, focused on more permanent solutions which have made it easier for the public to cycle or walk safely around neighborhoods and town centers. Specific measures already initiated in Coventry include the Binley Cycleway in Coventry following confirmation of £8.6 million funding.
The £8.6m scheme has been made possible by £5.9m funding from the Walking and Cycling Programme, the DfT Active Travel Fund (tranche 2) confirmed allocations, WMCA grant contribution (£69k) and Coventry City Council funding contribution (£61k). Additional funding towards the scheme is being sought.
Evidence of success
The final scheme has the potential to increase the number of daily cycle journeys taken in this area by over 400%, greatly supporting the region-wide objective of increasing cycle journeys from 1 to 5% of all journeys by 2023. The schemes will also make active travel safer by fully separate people travelling by bike from motorists. Increasing confidence of cyclists will really encourage more people to get on their bike and feel the benefits
Potential for learning or transfer
This is a practice that can be easily transferred to any city which is ready to transform its transport network and wishes to prioritise active travel.