A presentation on the progress of the Local Transport Plan (LTP) Review.
The Committee received a detailed presentation on the progress of the council’s review of the Gloucestershire Local Transport Plan (LTP).
Having adopted the Local Transport Plan (2015-2031) in June 2016, the Council has a statutory requirement to review existing policies within the plan and to consider any changes to national, regional, county priorities. In addition, the Council to take into account any transport infrastructure requirements.
It was announced that formal public consultation on the plan’s vision and objectives would be undertaken from January to March 2020. Feedback from the consultation and the revised plan to be presented to the Environment Scrutiny Committee and to the Joint Committee in the Spring. The plan to be considered by Cabinet in the Summer, with the final document presented for adoption by Full Council in Autumn 2020.
Working within a new and extended time-frame, (to consider anticipated transport technologies and growth scenarios extending to 2041), officers gave an update on the various components of the plan. These included; public and community transport (bus); cycling policies; (including any priorities identified through the emerging Local Walking and Cycling Infrastructure Plan); rail; highway and freight considerations. The review to consider two areas of work, i) the council’s transport priorities from the current time to 2031); ii) the council’s more aspirational priorities, for the period up to and including 2041.
It was noted that the 6 place-based strategies, (previously known as ‘Connecting Places Strategies’), relating to the Central Severn Vale, Forest of Dean, North Cotswold, South Cotswold, Stroud and Tewkesbury areas, had been amalgamated into the one document, with each strategy forming a sub-section of the main document. In response to data taken from a ‘scale of impact’ indicator, priorities identified within each of the schemes to be categorised under one of four key headings; strategic; major; local or countryside.
Members attention was drawn to the ‘Park and Ride’ sites located throughout the county and informed that the sites would now be referred to as ‘Transport Interchange Hubs’. The intention was to consider and review existing sites (x 3) and replace with transport hubs (x 6).
To reflect the state of emergency declared at the council meeting in June 2019, and the council’s commitment to achieving an 80 per cent reduction in corporate carbon emissions by 2025, members were informed that the council would be considering a range of carbon reduction proposals, (including investing in ultra low vehicles), as part of the revised plan.
Inviting members to comment on revisions to the plan, officers highlighted the importance of engaging with district/borough authorities. Emphasis was placed on seeking views from a local perspective, including seeking opinions on proposals relating to air and rail transport and on the feasibility of a Third River Severn Crossing. One member requested presentations to the individual local authorities and the request was noted. Action by: Colin Chick
Responding to questions, officers advised that a key ambition from the review would be to bring together all policies, (including community transport), into one single overarching strategy. Emphasis on the need to take into consideration both urban and rural issues was noted.
In response to the information, the committee agreed to submit any comments, (in the period prior to commencement of the public consultation in 2020), to Joanne Moore at email@example.com. Members were requested to advise their local authorities of the opportunity to participate in the consultation.
Rail Investment Strategy
During the presentation, members received an update on the council’s Rail Investment Strategy, including details of the proposal to award funding from the Business Rate Pool Strategic Economic Development Fund (SEDF) to support the development of a Rail Investment Strategy (RIS) for Gloucestershire. The Rail Investment Strategy, (a countywide commission), will be used to inform the Local Transport Plan Review and to feed into the emerging Local Industrial Strategy.
At a meeting of the Gloucestershire Chief Executives Group on 10 June 2019, an ‘in principle’ decision was taken to finance the £70,000 funding shortfall required to undertake the study.
The committee was informed that, to ensure the study delivered on schedule, the County Council had already commissioned SLC Rail and SYSTRA Consultants to prepare a ‘multiple economically-evidenced Rail Investment Strategy’ (RIS) ahead of the decision to award funding. By taking this decision, the study was anticipated to complete in December 2019.
Confirming approval of the ‘in-principle’ decision by the Senior Officer Group, (to transfer £70k funding from the Strategic Economic Development Fund for the development of a Rail Investment Strategy (RIS) for Gloucestershire), the committee endorsed the proposal, pending formal ratification of the decision at the Economic Growth Joint Committee meeting on 20 November 2019.
Action: the committee to formalise the ‘in-principle’ decision (detailed above) made at this meeting