Temporary transport scheme will help get Bucks moving after coronavirus says the council

Options are being considered such as pop-up cycleways and temporary road closures...

Friday, 3rd July 2020, 11:04 am
Updated Friday, 3rd July 2020, 11:08 am
A bike rack

Extra town centre parking, temporary road closures and pop-up cycleways are being considered as ways to help people adjust to coronavirus measures now that lockdown is easing.

The council has received funding from the Department for Transport, Buckinghamshire Council to develop a programme of 'emergency active travel proposals'.

The aim, the council says, is to build on the resurgence in walking and cycling already happening during lockdown, help contribute to a cleaner environment, ensure people keep the right social distance while out and about and provide further safe access routes to schools.

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Buckinghamshire Council cabinet member for transport, Nick Naylor, said: “The pandemic has pressed a massive global reset button.

"Of course, while we all want things to get back to normal, there may be areas where a change in habits would be really beneficial.

"Things like working from home, less need to travel and more use of online services have already resulted in less pollution, better air quality and other environmental benefits.

"We can potentially learn from this and encourage different ways of doing things going forward.”

Mr Naylor also added that the council is looking at a range of options, and the final plan is subject to change.

He added: "Of course, we don't have the money to tackle everything, so we're focusing on areas where we can make the biggest difference with temporary and ‘pop-up’ measures.

"The advantage of these schemes is that because they are temporary they can be altered.

"If they work really well some could become permanent, but we’ll be keen to hear local feedback and see how well these measures perform before any decisions like that are made.”

The council says there will be more opportunities for longer term changes, to benefit communities, the local economy and the environment with a second round of permanent active travel measures.

This could include more electric vehicle charging points and potentially taking part in the Government’s e-scooter trials.

Clive Harriss, cabinet member for sports and leisure added: "All the measures under consideration need to complement everything being done locally to restart the economy and reopen our high streets, schools and other community facilities. It needs to be a focused effort and as Nick says, a perfect opportunity to think about changing some of our habits going forward, particularly around cycling and walking."