Streets will be designed, built and managed to support people walking with new infrastructure, better signposting and maps, and more pedestrian crossings
London is aiming to become the world’s most walkable city. The UK capital’s first ever walking and cycling commissioner, Will Norman, has unveiled the city’s Walking Action Plan.
Supported by Public Health England (PHE), it sets out how London will become a city where walking, for those that can, is the most obvious, enjoyable and attractive means of travel for all short trips.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, wants to increase the proportion of people walking, cycling and taking public transport to 80 per cent of journeys by 2041, from 63 per cent now. The vision is that one million extra walking trips will take place each day by 2024.
The Mayor is investing a record £2.2bn in streets across London to make them better for walking and cycling, and improve air quality.
Research shows that too many people are put off walking because of concerns about road danger or worries about their levels of physical fitness.
The Walking Action Plan aims to help Londoners overcome these barriers by:
Major projects are already underway to enable more walking across London, such as Highbury Corner, where a new public space and new pedestrian crossings are being installed, and at Old Street where work will begin to transform the roundabout in 2019.
The experience of pedestrians will also be improved around Swiss Cottage with new crossings and the removal of the dangerous gyratory. And in Kingston, Transport for London (TfL) funding is helping to deliver improved pedestrian and cycling routes between the town centre and the riverside.
Close partnership working is crucial in delivering a better walking experience across the capital, which is why TfL is supporting London’s boroughs to deliver attractive, healthy and safe streets, including the £115 million Liveable Neighbourhoods programme, with the first seven projects starting in 2018.
London’s first ever Walking Action Plan comes alongside the Mayor introducing bold and widespread measures to clean up London’s air. This includes the Mayor launching the world’s first ultra low emission zone (ULEZ) which puts in place minimum emission standards for vehicles, spending more than £300 million transforming London’s bus fleet, and making sure TfL no longer licences new diesel taxis from this year.
The Mayor has already introduced an emissions surcharge – or ‘T-charge’ – meaning vehicles must meet minimum exhaust emission standards, or drivers have to pay a daily £10 charge in addition to the congestion charge.
“By making it easier for Londoners to leave their cars at home and walk instead, it will tackle the air pollution crisis and reduce congestion as London’s population continues to grow,” said Norman. “It will have a truly transformational impact on our city.”
If you like this, you might be interested in the following:
Survey: Blockchain for smarter cities: Where’s the action?
SmartCitiesWorld is undertaking a global survey which looks at the level of understanding around blockchain and the impact it can have on creating smarter cities. We would love to hear from you
London mayor’s fund to help cut emissions
The UK capital’s mayor, Sadiq Khan, continues his campaign for cleaner air with the launch of a £500 million investment fund
London mayor launches smart roadmap
Sadiq Khan publishes his plan to make London the world’s smartest city and launches a city-wide tech talent initiative