Page last updated at 24 February 2016 at 11:16
What is a Travel Plan?
A travel plan is a package of measures designed to encourage more sustainable modes of transport such as walking, cycling, bus usage or car sharing.
A travel plan is a long term strategy for improving and managing access to a site focusing on promoting sustainable modes, and minimising single occupancy car trips. For the purposes of the planning process, travel plans must be documented and contain objectives and targets, the policies and measures to be implemented, an action plan and the monitoring and review arrangements.
The need to manage transport in new developments is included within national, regional and local policy. There is also a need to increase travel choices and encourage sustainable travel by reducing dependency on the priavte car. This is supported by the National Planning Policy Framework which states that opportunities for the use of sustainable transport modes for the movement of goods or people should be protected or exploited, with Travel Plans being a key tool to deliver this.
The National Planning Practice Guidance, published in March 2014, also notes the importance of travel plans. The guidance states that travel plans should be considered in parallel to development proposals and readily integrated into the design and occupation of the new site. They should support Transport Assessments in taking forward the identified mitigation measures which relate to on-going occupation and operation of the development.
Travel plans need to consider all the journeys to and from a site. Workplace travel plans including office, hospital or visitor attractions are ‘destination’ based plans, generally designed to reduce car use to a specific destination. Residential travel plans focus on the ‘origin’ where journeys are made from.
There should be a process of continual monitoring and review to reflect changing circumstances and to ensure that agreed outcomes are met.
What are the Benefits of a Travel Plan?
Travel Plans are important for both existing businesses and new developments; they can reduce the impact on the surrounding highway network, nearby residents, benefit new or existing staff or residents. Some of the possible benefits of a Travel Plan are listed below:
- Promoting alternatives to the private car could mean less congestion and therefore safety improvements on local roads
- Promoting sustainable travel choices could lead to a reduction in highway capacity problems
- Reduced congestion could lead to improvements in air quality and levels of air and noise pollution
Travel Plans can also…
- Make the site more attractive to potential occupiers/users
- Increase opportunities for active travel, such as walking, scooting and cycling
- Reduce demand for parking spaces
- Improve travel choice and access to services for users
- Provide opportunities for employers to feed into corporate social responsibility or sustainability initiatives
How can Eastleigh Borough Council help?
Eastleigh Borough Council provide advice and support for the planning and implementation of the following types of travel plans: