Towards the end of our public consultation on that plan, the country was placed in lockdown to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus COVID-19.
Birmingham City Council have published a draft Birmingham Transport Plan for public consultation between 28 January and 27 March 2020.
The plan looks forward to 2031, acknowledging our history and heritage but considering what the city needs to do differently to meet the demands of the future.
Birmingham has always been a city of innovation, a place where new technologies are developed and embraced, and a place which is constantly reinventing itself: the golden age of canals gave way to the golden age of steam trains, the golden age of trams, the golden age of buses and the golden age of cars.
So what are the challenges and opportunities facing us as we create the next golden age?
At the very top of the list are climate change and air quality. Transport is responsible for around a third of carbon emissions, and road transport is responsible for up to 70% of the NO2 emissions which are poisoning our air. The Council’s has committed to becoming a carbon neutral city by 2030 and to clean up our air beyond the legally required levels. All this means we must consider carefully how we move goods and people and make sure that is done in the most sustainable, least polluting, way possible.
Birmingham is a growing city. By 2031 we expect to have a population of 1.25 million, with 100,000 more jobs and 51,000 more homes than in 2011. This could translate into 1.2 million extra journeys on Birmingham’s transport network every day – a network which is already operating at or near capacity at the busiest times. Available land is also in short supply, and the Council estimates that 80% of those new homes will be built on previously developed land. Moving people and goods more efficiently enables more trips can be made using less space. Reducing dependence on that private car can free up land currently dedicated to parking.
A number of schemes to invest in and improve public transport are already underway or committed, with opportunities such as HS2 and the Commonwealth Games unlocking funding and accelerating delivery. Grasping these opportunities now shows that Birmingham is a place where investment is welcomed and pays off, and helps to attract future funding.
New technologies in transport are constantly emerging, with the West Midlands leading the way in many initiatives. We are also getting better at collecting and using data to optimise the transport network in real time – monitoring and tackling network performance, congestion, roadworks and unexpected disruptions.
Travel Demand Management can influence people’s journeys to make best use of the existing infrastructure and encourage changes to how, when and where people travel and even if the trip is necessary at all. Lots of small changes to our daily travel can have a significant impact on the wider network.
Strategic routes in the city centre, data includes A38 Expressway, A38 Tyburn Road, A45 Coventry Road and Ladywood Middleway (Southbound). Sites chosen as complete data was available for these locations. Graph shows all traffic per day. Key dates are labelled to show changes in flow.
Emergency Transport Plan, Moseley ward forum
Emergency Birmingham Transport Plan
Moseley ward forum
8 July 2020
Joe Green, Travel Demand Manager
Draft Birmingham Transport Plan published in January 2020
sets out what we need to do differently to meet future demands:
Climate emergency – carbon neutral Birmingham by 2030
Air quality – going beyond the legal minimum requirements
Accommodating future growth – population and economy
Grasping opportunities – Birmingham welcomes investment
Travel Demand Management approach to encourage change
Towards the end of public consultation on this plan, the UK was
placed in lockdown to reduce the spread of COVID-19…
Transport impact from COVID-19 and lockdown
Overall reduction in traffic levels (extent varies across modes)
Challenges around public transport capacity & confidence
Some issues around speeding and dangerous driving
More people walking & cycling, generally for leisure/exercise
Some people shopping more locally, often by foot or by bike
Quieter streets and improved air quality, leading to creation of
more pleasant residential environments across the city
Opportunities to lock in these benefits as lockdown eases
Traffic initially dropped
to around a third of
Gradual rises since the
easing of lockdown
(from 1 June, 15 June
and 4 July as schools,
retail and hospitality
begin to reopen),
currently at around ¾ of
Road Traffic Data
Vehicles per week on A38(M) at Dartmouth Circus
Emergency BTP - Vision
The vision for Birmingham’s transport is for a sustainable, green,
inclusive, go-anywhere network and for a low carbon, clean air
recovery from COVID-19 lockdown.
Safe and healthy environments support stronger communities
and will make active travel – walking and cycling – the first choice
for people making short journeys.
A fully integrated, high quality public transport system will be the
go-to choice for longer trips. In the short term, limited capacity
on public transport will be offset by increased space for walking
and cycling and by reduced travel overall.
(built on same Vision & Big Moves as draft Birmingham Transport Plan)
Reallocating road space
Reallocating road space away from
single occupancy private cars to create
safe space for walking, cycling and
social distancing while maintaining
public transport provision.
• Review dual carriageways for cycle/bus lanes.
• Review high streets for footway widening
• Review footways for shared foot/cycle track
• Review planned schemes to maximise walking,
cycling and public transport
• Accelerate delivery of cycle infrastructure
Managing demand through parking measures
Managing demand through parking
measures where land and space
currently occupied by car parking is
repurposed for walking, cycling and
• Review on-street parking for footway widening
• Discourage parking on footways
• Parklets and/or spill-out business activity.
• Prioritise space for disabled parking, car club
vehicles, electric vehicle charging
• More cycle and motorcycle parking
• Review implementation of CPZs
• Adopt new Parking SPD
Transforming the city centre
Transforming the city centre through
the creation of walking and cycling
routes alongside public transport
services and limited access for private
Photo credit:Southside BID @EnjoySouthside
• City centre traffic cells
• Seek opportunities for footway widening.
• Review bus stops and waiting space
• Space for parklets/spill-out business activity
• Accelerate/enhance public realm project
• Establish new cycle links
• Cycle/motorcycle parking & e-scooter hire
• Adjust crossings for more pedestrian priority
• Reimagine James Watt Queensway
Prioritising active travel in local neighbourhoods
Prioritising active travel in local
neighbourhoods so that walking and
cycling is the way most people get
around their local area most of the time.
Local areas are places where people are
put first, creating stronger communities
with space for exercise and play.
• 20mph speed limits
• Low traffic neighbourhood pilots
• Measures to support schools
• Footway widening
• Pedestrian crossings
• E-scooter and e-cargo bike trials
• Prioritise walking/cycling in local schemes
Emergency Active Travel Fund (DfT)
• West Midlands (WMCA) to receive £17.2m in 2020/21 (indicative)
• Provisionally Birmingham will receive c£5m of this allocation overall
• Infrastructure schemes are being delivered alongside package of
supporting measures & a regional communications campaign
• Funding being released in two tranches (20%/80%)
– Tranche one: mainly for temporary/trial measures (delivered in Jul-Aug)
– Tranche two: beginning to implement things more permanently (by Mar 21)
Reopening High Streets Safely Fund (MHCLG)
• Birmingham has been allocated £1,016,937
• Coordinated by Neighbourhoods Directorate, but aligned with Transport
activity around city centre and local centres/high streets
• Mainly for safety measures around social distancing when queuing
Emergency Active Travel Fund (tranche one)
Pop-up cycle lanes (x7)
• Sutton Coldfield ring-road; A45 (City Centre to Small Heath); A38
(Selly Oak to Northfield); A47 (City Centre to Fort Dunlop); City centre
to City Hospital via JQ; Bradford Street; A38 to A34 link
Park & Pedal (from train stations and other suitable locations,
largely connecting to existing routes with some spurs added)
City Centre Traffic Cells initiative
Places for People Low Traffic Neighbourhoods – two pilots in
Lozells and Kings Heath plus some other quick-win measures
Pavement widening in Stirchley & Moseley local centres
- Temporary measures, with potential to become permanent
Emergency Active Travel Fund (tranche one)
in and around Moseley
Moseley local centre scheme
First set of measures delivered from this week, with some
opportunity for further measures as required.
Places for People
o Low Traffic Neighbourhood pilot in Kings Heath, with potential
for an early demonstration measure on School Road ahead of
wider development and engagement for this part of Moseley.
Car Free School Streets
o Scheme extended to 6 more schools from September 2020,
including Anderton Park Primary School (Dennis Road).
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