Gordon Wakeford

Report by Professor David Begg sponsored by Siemens
London’s Transport: Progress and Future Challenges
BASE London – Gordon Wakeford
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Answers for infrastructure and cities.
“An organisation such as TfL is the envy of many cities”
Formed in 2000 by the Greater London Authority Act 1999, it’s unlike any other body
in the public sector.
Intensively focused on delivery, operational performance and customers.
Exist to deliver the Mayor’s agenda in the way successive Prime Ministers wish
Whitehall would deliver theirs.
Strategic planning - epitomised by the Mayor’s Transport Strategy (MTS) and 2025 Transport
Modal Shift - there has been a 9% shift from car to sustainable transport since 2000.
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London’s Roads
Congestion Charging
ATM (Active Travel Management) SCOOT (Split Cycle Offset
Optimisation Technique)
Introduced in 2003, it cut traffic by
20% and initially reduced
congestion by 30%.
Led to a dramatic increase in bus
patronage and reliability and a big
increase in the numbers walking
and cycling.
Traffic flows managed by holding
traffic at junctions, allows longer
strategic journeys to be prioritised.
This was used successfully during
the 2012 Games, reducing traffic
around games venues in central
London, diverting traffic to Outer
Smoothes traffic flow by
redistributing traffic and
congestion. However can leads to
more congestion away from the
Transport for London Road
Network (TLRN). The system
enables TfL to accurately predict
changing traffic patterns as a result
of changes to the network.
With population predicted to grow by 14.2% in the next 10 years these initiatives will only take us
so far. If the congestion charging zone is not extended, it will be difficult to control congestion.
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London’s Roads
- A road jam packed with cars
- Strip back the metal you find that
there are not that many people
- Compare with how much space
is used by a bus moving the
same number of people
These images illustrate how inefficient cars are as users of road space. There is a common
misconception that buses cause congestion. They are in fact congestion busters.
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London’s Roads
Merit in the argument that relative to the public transport network, investment in the roads network in London
has played second fiddle.
80% of all passenger and some freight trips are made by road.
However roads only account for a third of TfL’s expenditure.
A simplistic, but mistaken, view is that spending on roads is “wrong” and “bad” whereas spending
on public transport is “good” and “green”.
The quality of the road network is vital to bus passengers, cyclists and pedestrians as well as car users,
taxis and freight.
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Cycling in London has increased by 70% and on major roads by 173%, in the last decade.
However cycling only accounts for 2% of all journeys made in London - a relatively low figure compared to
many other UK and European cities.
2% of daily journeys in London
20% KSI
Through the “cycling revolution”, Boris intends to preserve his predecessor’s target to increase cycling
mode share to 5% of all journeys by 2026. London is broadly on track to achieving this target.
•For the Mayor to achieve a cycling revolution he must allocate funding and take bold action on cycling
•Segregated cycle lanes, speed reduction, shared space and junction design are crucial to further uptake.
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Future challenges for transport in London
Challenges facing TfL going forward:
Tackling traffic congestion against the rising population
Achieving the right balance in the allocation of road space
Improving London’s air quality record
Road safety, protecting vulnerable road users
Growing bus patronage in a period of substantial cuts in funding
There has been a step change in the quality and capacity of transport in London, in the past 12 years
London has benefitted hugely from a strong and stable structure of devolved government,
bold and brave political leadership and a highly professional and competent organisation to deliver.
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