Dev Bank-leaderboard-advert-1430px-x-145px_Tourism


11 April 2024

Future-proof Transport System Needs Action to Match Ambitious Policies, Says New Report

Wales needs a future-proof transport system to face up to the realities of climate change, but ambitious policies have yet to be matched in the scale and pace of delivery.

A new report from the IWA says that Welsh Government is faced with a complex set of challenges, including encouraging take-up of electric vehicles (EV) and charging infrastructure, financing adequate public transport service provision and inducing behavioural change amidst a divided public opinion.

It says these are some of the tasks awaiting decision-makers for the next decade, a critical period for action to tackle the climate emergency.

The Next Step for Transport in Wales: Achieving a Sustainable Transport System for People and Planet, written by IWA Co-Director Joe Rossiter, is based on discussions with transport leaders in Wales organised by the IWA in partnership with ARUP.

The report suggests that transport policy has felt like too much ‘stick’ and too little ‘carrot’, while recent debates on the implementation of a 20 mph speed limit on residential roads and busy pedestrian areas have shown that the transformation required to bring transport up to speed with the realities of climate change remain divisive.

The IWA puts forward a suite of policy recommendations it says will help Wales take the next step towards a sustainable transport system which is accessible and affordable to all.

The report recommends:

  • The setting of stronger targets to direct transport policy
  • Widespread investment in behaviour change initiatives
  • Community and citizen-informed policy development
  • Supercharging of transport data collection to demonstrate the effectiveness of investment
  • Accelerating the transition to transport-oriented development across all levels of government
  • Utilising newly incorporated Corporate Joint Committees to maximise regional transport planning aligned to Wales’ sustainable transport vision

Wales has a low number of electric vehicles and limited charging infrastructure, says the paper, whilst 19.4% of households have no access to a car at all. Train links tend to be closer to more affluent communities while bus links are often located near poorer communities, but bus travel, says the report, is under-subsidised, leading to transport poverty and gender inequality as women use public transport more.

In the paper the IWA says:

“Transport can be the inhibitor or enabler of a more equal nation. Currently a lack of access to sustainable transport locks communities out of opportunities and exacerbates regional inequalities. By targeting investment into enabling communities with reliable, affordable, accessible and sustainable transport, the Welsh Government can bring economic benefits to communities and improve living standards.”

The report is available here.

Related Articles

8 May 2023

A Solution for Local Authorities to Develop Sustainable Tourism Transport Links
22 August 2023

Exploring Wales by Rail: Autumn Adventures with Transport for Wales and Visit Wales
5 September 2023

HS2: Reviving Old Steel for a Sustainable Future in Rail Transport
7 September 2023

Promoting Sustainable Transportation: Denbighshire’s Green Taxi Scheme
13 September 2023

UK Government Charts Course to Zero Emission Vehicles by 2035