Why is behaviour change important? When should we start considering behaviour change initiatives in our projects? And how exactly do we change behaviour?
Partners from local authorities and organisations around Scotland were invited to hear from a variety of guest speakers who shared their experience and expertise in influencing attitudes, habits and behaviour.
These sessions are part of the Places for Everyone event programme – Engage · Inspire · Learn
Why it’s important to influence public behaviour
First, we hear from Susanne Mueller, Communities Coordinator, Sustrans Scotland. Susanne highlights two key reasons why it’s important to influence public behaviour, in relation to Active Travel:
Tackling the climate crisis
Improving public health
Leven’s Behaviour Change Action Plan
Next, Susanne is joined by Daniel Prince, Infrastructure Coordinator, Sustrans Scotland and Enid Trevett, Community Engagement Officer, Coalfield Regeneration Trust. They share how the Coalfield Regeneration Trust has successfully co-developed Leven’s Behaviour Change Action Plan. This includes embedding the following values into the Behaviour Change Action Plan:
Involve young people;
Using what is already available; and
The spirit of community needs to be fostered through the way actions are delivered.
Cycling Scotland’s Behaviour Change Initiatives
Last, we hear from Katharine Brough, Head of Behaviour Change at Cycling Scotland. Katharine speaks about the Cycling Friendly programme and how the award and grant funding programme works with organisations in a variety of workplace, education and community settings across Scotland. The programme aims to address barriers to cycling and increase access to bikes and cycling rates. The session also touches on the available tools for creating and sustaining behaviour change.
From engaging with the community to designing infrastructure, how can we ensure that public space is welcoming and safe for everyone?
Partners from local authorities and organisations around Scotland were invited to hear from a variety of guest speakers on how to create more inclusive spaces.
These sessions are part of the Places for Everyone event programme – Engage · Inspire · Learn
Design Justice Network
First, we hear from Leah Lockhart and Raina Armstrong, both members of the Design Justice Network. Design Justice is an exploration of how design might be led by marginalized communities, dismantle structural inequality and advance collective liberation. The Design Justice principles are a practical framework for planning work and decision making. Below, you can find the recording of the session and you can access additional resources here.
Queering Public Space
How do you make transport and public space more inclusive? Are there design aspects that can help to make these safer and more welcoming? Can the organisation of transport and public space help to desist hate crimes and gender-based violence? We hear from Dr Ammar Azzouz and Mei-Yee Man Oram of Arup, and Professor Pippa Catterall of University of Westminster. They draw upon recent research to explore these various pressing issues. Below, you can find the recording of the session and you can access the full Queering the Public Space report here.
Make Space for Girls
Last, we hear from Imogen Clark and Susannah Walker, co-founders of a new charity, Make Space for Girls. It was set up to campaign for parks and similar public spaces to be welcoming to girls and young women. Many parks, play equipment and public spaces are designed for the default male. Therefore, Make Space for Girls use research, consultation, engagement and education to drive an approach to the planning and development of parks and similar public spaces. Undoubtedly, these spaces should recognise the different needs of girls and young women and should find ways to meet those needs. Below, you can find the recording of the session.
Completion of Phase 1 of Connecting Woodside, Glasgow
Malcolm Hall of Glasgow City Council, speaks about the first phase of the Connecting Woodside project, including a bit of background to the project, the impact of Covid-19, and where they’re at now.
Connecting Woodside, previously known as Woodside Mini-Holland, was funded by Sustrans Scotland through Places for Everyone, and Glasgow City Council. The Places for Everyone programme is funded by Transport Scotland.
As part of the Places for Everyone event programme – Engage · Inspire · Learn – partners from local authorities and organisations around Scotland were invited to hear from a variety of voices on the challanges of Low Traffic Neighborhoods.
Split into several sessions, we explored a range of topics from engagement and design to research and monitoring. All of the sessions were recorded and have been made available to view online.
Designing & budgeting for LTNs
Giulio Ferrini, Head of Built Environment at Sustrans London, shares the lessons learnt from a year of trial LTNs in London. Watch to learn more about designing successful LTNs and the costs involved.
Making the Case for LTNs
Will Wright, Evaluation Manager at Sustrans, talks through some the existing research on LTNs, Sustrans’ Introductory Design Guide and the importance of monitoring and evaluating interventions.
Katie Pennick, Campaigns Lead and Caroline Stickland, Partnerships Lead at Transport for All, share more information about the Pave the Way report, which is the product of six months research into how disabled people have been impacted by LTNs.
You can download Katie and Caroline’s slides here.
The Importance of Engagement
Why do we want to engage? Who do we engage with? How do we minimise risk and maximise equity? Ben Addy, Head of Collaborative Design at Sustrans London, runs through the principles of why engagement is important and what meaningful engagement looks like.
Lessons Learnt: City of Edinburgh Council
We hear from Paul Matthews from AECOM, who shares some of the lessons they’ve learnt since implementing LTN interventions in Edinburgh.
As part of our support for local authorities and other bodies to deliver high quality infrastructure that is accessible for all, Sustrans Scotland are hosting a series of online workshop on inclusive design. We have invited people with lived experience from around Scotland to help Sustrans and our partners understand how we can improve our designs and standards to increase accessibility for everyone.
The workshops are intended to be a safe space, where people can discuss the real life issues that they have faced and build working relationships with those designing walking, wheeling and cycling routes.
To ensure that sessions remain a safe space, attendance is limited, but you can request more details and information on future webinars by emailing PlacesForEveryone@sustrans.org.uk.
Session 1 – Inclusive Design
Spaces for People has enabled statutory bodies to implement temporary measures focused on protecting public health and supporting physical distancing.
Due to the nature of this programme, created as an emergency response to Covid-19, successful applicants were encouraged to implement the temporary infrastructure in a timely manner and provide visible improvements that had an immediate benefit. The fast-paced nature of the implementation process, meant that the opportunity for comprehensive community engagement, consultation and communication was limited. With the need for physical distancing during essential journeys still prominent, and no sign of this changing in the near-future, we need to ensure that this temporary infrastructure is designed in such a way that it is inclusive to all.
On Thursday 12th November we were joined by various local authorities, user groups and other stakeholders to discuss the topic of Inclusive Design. This workshop, co-hosted by SCOTS and Sustrans, was the first of the series, whereby delegates heard from individual users on their lived experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as Local Authorities regarding their inclusive design approaches. The format gave delegates the opportunity to meet each other and discuss learning points, improve shared understanding and knowledge, and liaise with transport professionals and users alike.
Three key themes were prominent throughout the workshop – Inclusive Engagement, Inclusive Communication, and how we evolve as this temporary infrastructure becomes longer-term.
Attendees agreed that during the engagement process, often the same voices are heard. It’s imperative that engagement reaches the unheard voices, providing equal opportunities for all to engage from the beginning and throughout the project lifespan. Other inclusive engagement suggestions included making use of British Sign Language during online engagement, and looking for alternatives to using maps and designs for people who are visually impaired.
There needs to be a long-term change to how we communicate, thinking about how to inform everyone of changes. Perhaps this is an opportunity to update corporate communications strategies to be more inclusive. Frequent communication with access panels, QR codes and the use of digital technology to communicate were also suggestions given during this workshop.
Temporary Infrastructure in the longer-term
It was recognised by attendees that although the temporary interventions were implemented as an emergency response to Covid-19, these interventions are now longer-term, with an opportunity for all local authorities to consider this a learning process and adjust accordingly for the future.
Session 2 – Inclusive Communication
On Thursday 4th March we were joined again by various local authorities, user groups and other stakeholders, this time to discuss the topic of Inclusive Communication. In this workshop delegates heard from Hussein Patwa, who reminded delegates of the basics when it comes to communication – who, why, what, when, and where. We were joined by James Davidson, Communications and Research Co-ordinator at Disability Equality Scotland (DES) who shared insight into DES’ Inclusive Communication Hub and the Six Principles of Inclusive Communication.
Delegates then heard from individual users on their lived experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic and Aberdeen City Council shared their lessons learnt from their Spaces for People interventions. Again, the format gave delegates the opportunity to meet each other and discuss learning points, improve shared understanding and knowledge, and liaise with transport professionals and users alike.
This session highlighted key discussions around identifying quick wins, sharing lessons learnt, understanding the importance of working relationships, as well as inclusive engagement and consultation. This includes, but isn’t limited to:
Avoid information overload
Using alt text and explaining images
Using simple language
Suitable fonts, colours and contrasts
Shadowing people to understand their perspective
Many maps and diagrams are not accessible
Don’t assume because you have communicated you have been understood
Consider the needs of people with neurodivergent conditions
Working closely with access groups
Importance of collaboration with people with different communication support needs
Making the most of critical friends
Setting up advisory groups of people with disabilities linked to council departments
Engagement and Consultation
Engaging from the start of the process through as many means as possible
Engagement should be prepared well in advance for fast-delivered projects
Improved understanding of BSL communication for engagement
EqIAs should be participatory
If people aren’t at a consultation, perhaps it’s because they can’t access it
Use various channels to speak to as many people as possible
Access points to Glasgow Queen Street and Central railway stations benefit from temporary Spaces for People public health improvements to help protect passengers against Covid-19.
Creating a safe commute
As we hit six months since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, the public transport sector is still facing significantly reduced demand across all services.
Compared with this time last year, bus and rail journeys in Scotland are down 50% and 70%, respectively.
However, with more people now returning to their physical workplaces, and with the return to schools and universities, a considerable uptake in daily public transport use is expected over the coming months.
If not managed correctly, we could see delays in journey times for passengers, and increased demand could make physically distancing near impossible.
In order to address this concern, Sustrans is working with Scottish local authorities through its Spaces for People programme to ensure that people are able to access and use the transport services they need safely.
Key case study
Central Station and Queen Street Station are the two major train stations in the heart of Glasgow city centre.
The routes covered not only facilitate travel to and from work, but also provide access to local and regional healthcare providers, grocery stores, leisure facilities and green spaces.
Over the last few months, both sites have undergone significant temporary infrastructure changes thanks to Glasgow City Council‘s £7.5 million Spaces for People project.
Queen Street station
George Street, North Hanover Street and Dundas Street provide the key access points to the newly renovated Queen Street Station.
Widened footways and temporary cycle lanes installed throughout George Square and the surrounding streets ensure that those arriving by foot and wheel are able to safely and easily access any one of Queen Street station’s three entrance points.
The hope is that this will not only give people the space needed to physically distance, but will also increase the uptake of active travel in the city centre, resulting in fewer cars on the road.
Should this be effective, this will leave roads less congested for those that most need them, such as buses, taxis and emergency vehicles.
Automated crossings have also been introduced in the area in order to minimise the risk of spreading Covid-19 through shared surface contact points.
Each of Glasgow Central station’s four main access points now benefit from temporary changes designed to both satisfy the needs of passengers whilst making the most of the existing infrastructure.
By introducing a one-way traffic flow on Argyle Street to vehicles heading Westbound, temporary cycle lanes and widened footways could be installed along the route.
Not only has this reduced traffic congestion, but people now have ample space to safely distance from one another as they enter and leave the station, as well as increased opportunities to travel actively for those journeying by bike.
Temporarily reduced access and parking restrictions at Gordon street ensure that maximum distancing space is available to people. A pop-up cycle lane has also been installed to make active travel an easier option.
Lastly, the installation of filtering bollards at the Union Street and Hope Street entrances help ensure that those entering and exiting the station are able to do so as smoothly as possible, whilst also minimising the physical contact time between the different streams of passengers.
All of these changes may prove vital in the rush of weekday commuting hours.
‘New normal’ service
Public transport is a vital link to many in accessing work, shops and services. And ensuring they can use this safely is essential to help slow the spread of Covid-19.
For people without access to a car – or for those whose journeys cannot be completed by walking, wheeling or cycling – reliable bus, train and ferry services are a necessity.
If public confidence in transport providers to protect our health is not improved we could see an increase in the use of private cars for short journeys.
It could also have big impacts on our long-term ambitions of securing a greener future for Scotland.
Changes such as those implemented through Spaces for People will take steps to make public transport safer and keep our roads clear for those who need it most.
Clackmannanshire Council are introducing temporary measures around schools in order to help children, parents and teachers physically distance on the school run.
Schools throughout Scotland have been largely closed since the beginning of March due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Now, with their imminent return this month, temporary measures are being introduced through Spaces for People in order to safeguard the health of pupils, parents and teachers, as well as wider communities.
Due to the increased hesitance around the use of public transport, concerns have been growing that school access roads could quickly become congested with parents attempting to drop off and pick up their children from school.
As well as contributing to the poor health outcomes that are associated with stationary vehicles, pavement parking would greatly reduce the footway space available to path users for physical distancing.
This, ultimately, could increase the likelihood of transmitting Covid-19 within the community.
Taking steps to prevent this, Clackmannanshire Council, supported by Sustrans, have allocated a portion of their Spaces for People funding to ensuring that the school run is still enjoyable and safe
These plans include restricting through traffic to buses and cyclists on The Orchard, Tullibody, an access road to Bernadette Primary School.
As well as promoting a healthy and active commute to school, reallocating road space will allow pupils to walk, wheel and cycle to school with the space they need to maintain physical distance.
As well as this, Covid-19 messages that remind path users of the importance of maintaining a safe physical distance have been installed on pavements using spray painted stencils.
Lamp post wraps and bolted on street signs have also been introduced.
Through Sustrans’ Places for Everyone programme, large pencil-shaped bollards have been erected along The Orchard as part of a wider School Street project undertaken during a refurbishment of the school building.
Trees and comfortable seating areas have also been introduced to offer waiting parents a distanced but convenient alternative to gathering outside of the school gate.
Where traffic cannot be restricted, fixed installations such as these increase driver awareness of their presence in a school zone and also provide an effective deterrence to mounting the kerb.
Some emergency measures proposed by Clackmannanshire Council as part of their Spaces for People application have already been fast-tracked towards becoming permanent.
Over the coming years, the informal walking, wheeling and cycling links that currently links Sauchie and Glenochil with the nearby Lornshill Academy will be upgraded through the Place for Everyone School Street project into a permanent shared-use path.
This will not only encourage children and parents to stay healthy and active whilst commuting to school, but also improve air quality and safety in the surrounding area.
“Clackmannanshire are making the school run safer, cleaner and more fun for all. Their ambition to prioritise active travel is evident in their Places for Everyone projects and remains at the heart of these Spaces for People interventions. Over the coming years, we will continue to support Clackmannanshire improve school journeys for all.”
Andrew Scoles, Infrastructure Officer, Sustrans
For more information on Clackmannanshire Council’s Space for People project click here.
Local businesses in Stonehaven are able to trade again safely thanks to physical distancing measures introduced by Aberdeenshire Council as part of their Spaces for People project.
For the better part of the last five months, businesses throughout the UK have been largely non-operational due to the public health crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Whilst protecting public health, indefinite closure and reduced footfall has had a devastating impact on the livelihoods and future prospects of businesses, especially small and local owners.
The appetite for change
Stonehaven has a number of streets primed for high footfall, including Allardice Street, Market Square and The Links.
In each of these locations, car-parking spaces have been removed using cones and lengths of coloured separators in order to facilitate additional space for pedestrians to pass one another and queue outside of shops safely.
The Links, in particular, has benefitted from the Spaces for People interventions.
With car-parking spaces removed, customers are now able to queue safely outside of local cafés and eateries, and enjoy expanded seating areas with an unrestricted view of the bay.
Janice Langdon, Owner at Molly’s Café Bar, was delighted by the interventions.
“Without the change of layout to the road, I would not have been able to open the business safely due to the constant queues from another business next door. All of our customers, old and new, comment about how safe they feel with the set-up we have outside. Covid-19 has had such a negative effect on people but this set-up, I must say, is all positive. People are so delighted to be getting out again and to make them feel safe is our priority.”
Janice Langdon, Owner, Molly’s Cafe and Bar
Equally, Nicci Dollar who owns Aunty Betty’s, a popular ice cream shop along The Links, has felt supported by the changes.
“We’ve found the changes to be wonderful. The changes at the beachfront have allowed us to create a queuing system and safe area for the public and our staff. We wish for this to be a permanent feature at the beachfront.”
Nicci Dollar, Owner, Aunty Betty’s
A coordinated effort
Following the award of Spaces for People funding, Sustrans worked closely with Aberdeenshire Council to develop a suite of appropriate temporary measures which were also conducive with physical distancing guidelines.
The key urban centres of Stonehaven, Banchory, Inverurie, Ellon, Fraserburgh, Peterhead and later Turriff were identified as areas which would benefit most from these measures, with changes having been rolled out from July 15th onward.
Now in effect, temporarily widened footways and one-way traffic flows allow pedestrians the space needed to move around, shop, visit essential services and enjoy their local areas whilst maintaining a safe physical distance.
Bonnie Thomson, Infrastructure Coordinator at Sustrans, has been overseeing the Aberdeenshire project since it was annouced.
We are delighted to see the temporary measures that have been introduced throughout Aberdeenshire. These changes will allow residents to complete essential journeys and access vital public services safely and with peace of mind.
Through its Spaces for People bid, The Highland Council has made changes to make it easier for people with disabilities and additional mobility requirements to walk, cycle and wheel around Inverness.
Physical barriers and space-limiting infrastructure, such as narrow footpaths, metal fencing and overgrown vegetation are normally no more than a minor nuisance to people travelling on bike or by foot.
But, because of Covid-19, they have become a major public health concern, as they make it much harder for people to physically distance when out and about.
However, for those with additional mobility needs, this kind of infrastructure has always been an issue. And, whether steering a pram, a cargo bike, or a wheelchair, for many, trying to navigate these kind of obstacles can be a major barrier to a simple journey.
Breaking down barriers
Through Sustrans’ Space for People programme, councils across Scotland have been addressing this problem. Many physical obstructions on walking and cycling routes have either been replaced with more accessible designs, or removed altogether.
In Inverness, the Highland Council, identified a number of these barriers along busy active travel commuting routes to the city centre.
They included Caulfield Road North, to the east of the city centre. This road links suburban communities with a number of essential services, including Raigmore Hospital, Insches Retail Park and the Inverness Campus.
The council replaced a large yellow gate with brightly coloured bollards in Resaurie, to make it easier for people to walk, cycle and wheel along the route.
Meanwhile, at the other end of Caulfield Road North, at the entry way to Cradlehall Business Park, the council added a dropped kerb in the pavement. This has helped create a smoother and safer crossing point for all users.
Similarly, to the west of the city centre, Kinmylies Way, a busy walking and cycling route with commuters had become overgrown with vegetation and was marred by imposing intermittent metal fencing.
This created a series of uncomfortable pinch points for path users. It also made it harder for people with cargo bikes, prams or wheelchair users to travel along the path.
The council removed lengths of metal barriers and broadened gravel paths. They also cut back vegetation, including tree cover which reduced the areas visibility. It is now much easier and safer for users travelling along the route.
The future is accessible
These small changes are not only cost-effective for local authorities but quick to apply, making them ideal for Spaces for People projects.
Most importantly of all however, is the difference they can make to how people move around their local areas and make every day journeys.
Find out more about the Highland Council’s Spaces for People project here.
This piece is part of a series on the South City Way Small Grants Fund. This fund was created to inspire community groups and charities to design artworks and gathering places which encourage walking and cycling. Find out more about the South City Way.
A new community artwork has been installed on Victoria Road in Govanhill using the Sustrans’ South City Way Small Grants Fund with three more still to come.
In recent years, significant media attention has focussed on the perceived and often real cultural tensions that are seen to be present in the Govanhill area of Glasgow.
In an effort to combat this and foster new community-led integration, Govanhill Baths Community Trust (GBCT) launched a successful application with Sustrans’ Places for Everyone programme, through the South City Way Small Grants Fund.
A Diverse Picture
Led by GBCT, and delivered in partnership with Southside Studios, Locavore, Romano Lav, Annette Street Primary School & Cuthbertson Primary School, the Govanhill Arts Regeneration Network (GARN) proposes a number of high profile public art pieces be installed in key sites around Govanhill in order to reflect the unique cultural diversity of the local area.
Initial designs for the installations were developed following a wide-ranging community consultation, including a charrette, in order to ensure the proposals were inclusive, as well as to facilitate a sense of ownership.
The four installations that were ultimately agreed upon will be located at various points along Victoria Road, the key route of the initial leg of the South City Way.
The Bowman Street Mural, situated at the intersection of Victoria Street and Bowman Street features images designed by the Govanhill Youth Club on the theme of cycling and urban landscape.
The imagery was created by the young people with the aid of design and workshop sessions facilitated by local artist Amelia Rowe.
“I think murals like this are important because they’re accessible to everybody, everybody sees them when they’re going about – they’re free.”
Amelia Rowe, Artist
Nadine Gorency, who led The Bowman Street Mural project on behalf of the GBCT, has been a vocal supporter of community-building initiatives such as this one which could help to promote greater integration in the Govanhill Community.
“The Bowman Street Mural celebrates the diversity of Govanhill with the local community through the arts as well as provide colour and vibrancy to the cycle lane which will in turn encourage cycling, health and wellbeing in Govanhill.”
Nadine Gorency, Project Manager, GBCT
In addition to fostering strengthened social ties, it is hoped the new mural will serve as an attractive rest opportunity for cyclists on the South City Way, increasing support for the local economy whilst also providing a safe cycle route to the city centre.