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News & Opinion Spaces for People

Spaces for People research resources

Spaces for People is the Scottish Government’s temporary active travel infrastructure programme, administered by Sustrans Scotland. It was launched in May 2020 as a response to the COVID-19 crisis. The programme allocated a total of £33m for active travel infrastructure measures. 34 partners, mostly local authorities, claimed funding through the programme for a range of projects that enabled safe active travel during the pandemic.

It enabled local authorities to install temporary measures to help people on foot, bike or wheels get about safely during the pandemic.

850 measures installed including:

  • 192 Footpath Widening stretching 41.4km
  • 27 Crossing Upgrades
  • 70 Cycle lane (Segregated) stretching 79.4km
  • 14 Cycle lane (Non-segregated) stretching 25.3km
  • 219 Cycle Parking
  • 56 Street Closure stretching 28.9km
  • 24 Street reduction (20mph) zones
  • 30 Speed reduction (Other) stretching 84.1km
  • 168 Vegetation cut back stretching 209km
  • 81 Other measures

Provided below are a range of reports and results from consultations in relation to Spaces for People. Resources are also provided in relation to the broader context of travel during the pandemic. Additional resources are also available on the relevant local authority website.

Consultations

Argyll & Bute – Spaces for People Engagement Surveys

Argyll & Bute Council asked for the views of the local community on Spaces for People proposals in seven town centres. The survey was open from Thursday 16 July to Sunday 26 July 2020. Reports are available for each of the individual towns included in the survey.

Argyll & Bute – Spaces for People Engagement Surveys

Scottish Borders CitizenSpace Survey responses

During June and July 2020 the public was asked to provide specific suggestions for temporary local schemes which would make it safer for people to walk or cycle for essential trips and exercise during COVID-19. An overview of all comments submitted is available through the below link.

Scottish Borders Citizen Space Survey responses

Commonplace

Visitors to the Commonplace website were able to create their own comments at a specific location, or agree with existing comments by clicking on the thumbs up button. For each comment, at each location, respondents choose from a multiple-choice list of issue(s) relating to social distancing, and a list of potential ways to improve this. They could also add extra information about issues, improvements or suggestions in the ‘other’ section. The platform was open for multiple council areas, and comments are available to review.

A report is also available on the Aberdeen responses. It includes three sections that explore the headline results of the Commonplace consultation for Aberdeen. The first section provides an overview of the whole consultation area. The second section provides a summary of results from three specific areas. The final section summarises who responded to the survey.

Commonplace Platform

Aberdeen City Council – Commonplace Report

East Lothian – Dunbar public engagement results

East Lothian Council conducted a survey to gain feedback on the proposed Spaces for People measures in Dunbar. The local community provided feedback online from the 30th November 2020 to 6th December 2020. This report presents the results and provides an insight into the community’s attitude to different interventions proposed in the local area.

East Lothian – Dunbar public engagement results

Attitudes

Edinburgh City Council

The City of Edinburgh Council (CEC) undertook a six-week public consultation entitled Retaining ‘Spaces for People’ Measures from the 22nd February until 5th April 2021. The survey is intended to give the Council a better understanding of how people feel about retaining the different spaces for people projects that have temporarily been introduced in Edinburgh, during the Covid-19 pandemic. Stantec was appointed to undertake the analysis of the open-ended questions in the public consultation survey. They had surveys on our online consultation hub aimed at residents, businesses and stakeholders. In addition to the consultation, Edinburgh City Council also conducted Market Research. The online questionnaire focused on;

  • how much people supported or opposed keeping the measures from strongly approve to strongly disapprove
  • what people felt were the main benefits or disadvantages of keeping the measures
  • which measures people would especially like to keep or remove.
  • what forms of transport they had used on streets with measures in place
  • how they had travelled around Edinburgh before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Spaces for People Consultation Analysis Open-Ended Questions Reporting

Summary of Business Responses to consultation on possible retention of Spaces for People (SfP) measures: Consultation Hub

Summary of stakeholder and community council responses to consultation on possible retention of Spaces for People measures

Response to individual and business surveys: headline data

City of Edinburgh Council Spaces for People Market Research

Disability Equality Scotland

Each week Disability Equality Scotland send out a poll question to their members on a topical issue. For the week beginning 14 August 2020, they asked two questions about the Spaces for People programme. The questions related to awareness of the measures and any impact on getting around.

Disability Equality Scotland

TACTRAN

TACTRAN is the statutory Regional Transport Partnership covering Angus, Dundee City, Perth & Kinross and Stirling. TACTRAN commissioned an attitudinal and behavioural survey to measure the effectiveness of the Spaces for People (SfP) programme in the TACTRAN region. It comprised of ten waves between August 2020 and April 2021. The survey provides in insight to:

  • The frequency participants travelled and mode used for nine different purposes both in the last seven days and hypothetically, if no COVID-19 restrictions were in place. It also included questions about expected future travel over the next month.
  • Participants’ attitude towards different modes of transport. If a respondent reported a negative feeling for a transport mode, they were asked to provide a reason for this opinion. Participants were also asked about their concerns in relation to people spreading the virus while using public or active travel respectively.
  • Participants’ were asked about their awareness of different Spaces for People measures implemented across the four local authority areas. If participants were aware of the measure, they were asked how positively or negatively they felt towards the measure, and the reason for this opinion.
  • Participants also shared information on the time spent walking or cycling for different purposes, such as leisure or commuting and how this had changed since March 2020.

TACTRAN Spaces for People Attitudinal Surveys Wave 10 Report

Traffic Data

Edinburgh City Council

Edinburgh City Council has presented data on cycle volume at locations that have Spaces for People measures.

Supporting Information for report on potential retention of Spaces for People measures: June 2021 Cycle counter data from Counters on Spaces for People routes

Scottish Borders Council Traffic Speed and Volume Dashboard

The Scottish Borders Council have provided a public dashboard presenting the outcome of speed surveys in multiple sites across the region. A comparison between three surveys is available, providing average speed and 85th percentile. The initial survey occurred before Spaces for People measures were introduced. The second and third surveys evaluate the Spaces for People measure of a 20mph speed limit.

Scottish Borders Council Traffic Speed and Volume Dashboard

Project Review

Glasgow City Council – Spaces for People Project Review & Assessment Report

Glasgow City Council has introduced a number of Spaces for People temporary measures as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic; including widened footways, pop-up cycle lanes and pedestrianisation zones using road space, giving priority to those walking, cycling, and wheeling. This report provides an overview of these measures, documents the analysis and evaluation of relevant data, sets out a process to enable an assessment of the individual measures and presents recommendations for either the removal or retention. Glasgow City Council commissioned Sweco to carry out this report.

Glasgow City Council – Spaces for People Project Review & Assessment Report

Travel during the Pandemic

NESTRANS

Nestrans have commissioned Systra to conduct monthly online travel behaviour and attitude surveys between July 2020 and March 2022. The reports provide insight as to how people in the North East of Scotland are traveling and how they expect to travel in the future, as well as finding out their current issues and concerns.

NESTRANS

Public Health Scotland

The report considers how COVID-19 is affecting the use of transport systems, the implications for population health and wellbeing and support for policy responses during the transition through and beyond COVID-19. While the report does not specifically review Spaces for People measures, it does provide it does give an understanding of transport use and attitudes during the pandemic, with particular focus on health and health inequalities. Both the briefing and full report is available below.

Transport use, health and health inequalities: The impact of measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 – Briefing

Transport use, health and health inequalities: The impact of measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 A rapid review of evidence in support of a health inequalities impact assessment

Transport Scotland

Transport Scotland is monitoring trends and attitudes to transport during the COVID-19 outbreak. Regular reports provides a snapshot of travel across main modes when compared to a pre-pandemic baseline. 

Transport Scotland also carried out a series of telephone surveys with a representative sample of over 16s across Scotland. The survey is aimed at gaining an understanding of the ways in which the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting current travel behaviour and intentions for future travel in Scotland. As of October 2021, 20 waves of the survey have been undertaken, with the highlights of the report available below. The report provides an insight into:

  • The frequency participants travelled and mode used for ten different purposes. These questions were asked in the context of the last seven days and prior to the first lockdown.
  • Participants were asked about their concerns in relation to people spreading COVID-19 while using public or active travel respectively.
  • Participants were asked about their future expected travel behaviour
  • Participants were asked about their attitude to public transport, their compliance with travel guidance and the vaccination.

COVID-19 Transport Trend Data

COVID-19 Public Attitudes Survey Data

Categories
Engage • Inspire • Learn PfE Places for Everyone

Diving into Low Traffic Neighborhoods

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.

You can download Will’s slides here.

Pave the Way

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.

Categories
News News & Opinion Places for Everyone

How can mapping pavements help support physical distancing?

Mapping pavement widths can help local authorities identify pinch points in urban centres or where physical distancing is otherwise unachievable. High Street, North Berwick. Neil Hanna/Sustrans

Responding to a crisis

With the advent of the Covid-19 pandemic, the scarce amount of space allotted to people across Scotland’s towns and cities is firmly in the forefront.

Attempting to maintain a two-metre physical distance from other pavement users whilst navigating by foot or wheel can be a nuisance at the best of times and an impossibility at others.

In aid of this, Sustrans’ Spaces for People programme, funded by the Scottish Government, has distributed almost £40 million to local authorities to provide temporary infrastructure to help people walk, wheel and cycle.

Spaces for People is delivering temporary infrastructure throughout Scotland to help people walk, wheel and cycle safely through the Covid-19 pandemic. Forrest Road, Edinburgh. Sustrans/Neil Hanna

With a common bid by local authorities’ being to widen public footways, Sustrans have set to calculate and map pavement widths in towns and cities through Scotland to help identify potential crowding pinch points and support physical distancing.

Early mapping in Edinburgh

In 2010, City of Edinburgh Council began work on developing an Active Travel Action Plan, a long-term city-wide project to improve the accessibility and safety of walking, cycling and wheeling infrastructure.

One of the ways Sustrans has been assisting the council with this ambitious project is by undertaking the painstaking work of mapping individual pavement widths throughout the city.

With physical distancing guidelines now in effect as a matter of public health, the construction of a working pavement width database for the whole of Scotland has taken on a new urgency.

Once lockdown was announced, Sustrans accelerated work on providing City of Edinburgh Council with a comprehensive dataset of pavement widths.

This was achieved by adapting code developed for New York to complement Ordinance Survey data.

From this initial success, Sustrans has been able to develop further datasets for Glasgow, East Lothian, Dundee, East Ayrshire and South Ayrshire, with the offer being extended to any other local authorities who would find such data useful.

The coding process

Infrastructure Coordinator for Sustrans Alasdair Anderson was a key player in developing the mapping datasets. As lead on the project, he explains:

“The Python code used to do the analysis utilised Ordinance Survey’s most detailed Mastermap Topograpic Area mapping.

This identifies pavements and paths within a given local authority and accomplishes the surprisingly difficult task of measuring the width of an irregularly shaped object by using a tailored algorithm.

By first calculating the centreline for each of the thousands of bits of pavement that have already been identified, the algorithm then measures the distance back from individual pavement centre point to the pavement edge to calculate the width.

Finally, the results are compiled into a GIS dataset which can be analysed statistically or displayed on a map”.

Alasdair Anderson, Infrastructure Coordinator, Sustrans
Even Edinburgh’s busiest shopping streets have very narrow pavements. Raeburn Place, Stockbridge. Ordinance Survey.

Using the data

An immediate benefit of this data is that it can be used to help people navigate routes which only follow wider pavements.

For example, Sustrans officers have been looking to use pavement widths data to enable them to plan led walks with volunteers or school children once lockdown restrictions are sufficiently eased.

The larger impact, however, of these mapping capabilities is apparent when the data is combined with other information in order to identify the narrowest or busiest streets in order to prioritise them for widening interventions.

While the £38.97 million available under the Spaces for People fund is a lot of money, it is not nearly enough to widen every pavement in Scotland. As such, working out how to prioritise pavement widening initiatives becomes crucial.

Pavement distancing descriptionWidthkm%
Easy>4.7m133.974
Comfortable3.8 to 4.7m105.933.1
Possible2.7 to 3.8m362.7510.7
Difficult2 to 2.7m608.8418
Too narrow1.5 to 2m975.0128.9
Less than minimum design guidance<1.5m1192.835.3
Total ‘difficult’ or narrower<2.7m2776.6582.2
Table demonstrating the widths of pavements throughout Edinburgh as they relate to physical distancing health guidelines.

Applications in Dundee

One of the first practical applications of Sustrans’ pavement mapping capabilities took place in Dundee city centre.

While nearly empty during lockdown, Union Street in Dundee has been closed to traffic in anticipation of crowds of people returning as businesses reopen. Union Street, Dundee. Paul Reid/Sustrans

A dataset of shops and services in Dundee was first created. This was then overlaid with the footway width dataset Sustrans had created to help identify narrow pavements where high footfall was likely to occur. From this, a unique set of Covid-19 emergency proposals for shopping streets in Dundee was able to be generated.

Using these emergency proposals, Sustrans was then able to highlight particular areas where it would be most crucial to prioritise pavement widening interventions.

Areas in blue are streets which would most benefit from widened pavements. Similar approaches have now been utilised in Edinburgh and East Ayrshire.

Looking forward

Looking beyond the Covid-19 pandemic, the datasets Sustrans has created provide local authorities with an invaluable resource with which to maximise the benefit of footway renewal programmes.

Initial progress can be made by first focussing on pavements which fall short of 1.5m, normally considered to be the minimum.

Interventions in areas such as these would improve accessibility for those with additional mobility support needs immensely, such as those manoeuvring a wheelchair or a pram.

Recent adaptations in the code used to calculate pavement widths have now enabled Sustrans to calculate the widths of entire streets.

This new capability could be instrumental in helping Scottish local authorities understand where it would be most beneficial to deliver cycling infrastructure in the future.

Gallery

Take a look at some of the Scottish towns and cities Sustrans has created GIS pavement width maps for in the image gallery below.

Categories
Spaces for People

Professional briefing on Spaces for People

Why is Spaces for People important for health and wellbeing?

Ensuring that everyone is equally able to move around their local area safely to meet their needs while adhering to physical distancing adjustments is important for the health and wellbeing of the population. [i]Douglas MJ et al. Health and Transport: A Guide. Scottish Health and Inequalities Impact Assessment Network; 2018. www.scotphn.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Transport-Guide2018-Final-Formatted.pdf [ii]Cooper E et al. Transport, health, and wellbeing: An evidence review for the Department for Transport. NatCen; 2019. … Continue reading [iii]NHS Health Scotland Place and Communities Inequality Briefing. NHS Health Scotland; 2016. www.healthscotland.scot/publications/place-and-communities

  • It increases opportunities for social interactions which are important in reducing social isolation and maintaining good mental health
  • It enables access to work, education and training as well as local resources that are essential to maintaining good health
  • It enables access to services including health and social care services

Where this involves walking, wheeling and cycling for all or part of a journey it also increases levels of physical activity and contributes to improved physical and mental health and wellbeing for adults and children. For example regular physical activities can reduce the risk of developing obesity, cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes and mental health problems and can improve mood. [iv]Public Health England. Spatial Planning for Health. An evidence resource for planning and designing healthier places. Public Health England; 2017. … Continue reading [v] Douglas MJ et al. Health and Transport: A Guide. Scottish Health and Inequalities Impact Assessment Network; 2018. www.scotphn.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Transport-Guide2018-Final-Formatted.pdf [vi]Scottish Government National Transport Strategy: Protecting our climate and improving our lives. Edinburgh: Scottish Government Edinburgh; 2019. … Continue reading

The Scottish Government’s Transport Transitions Plan encourages walking, wheeling and cycling, where possible as an alternative to using public transport, and if using public transport, to be mindful of the restrictions in place.

Creation of additional local safe, high quality space and good quality routes through road reallocation and a review of traffic and parking arrangements is a vital part of our response to maintaining a safe physical distance, improving the environment, providing protection from traffic and promoting good health and wellbeing.

Challenges to moving safely

Increase in road traffic

There can be tensions and conflict between different transport modes. As restrictions are further relaxed, the number of people moving will continue to increase while the requirement to maintain physical distancing will remain. More people will return to work, education and training and people may want to access local facilities including shops and outdoor cafes.

This might help to reinvigorate the local economy but will also increase the pressure on local spaces.

Data from Transport Scotland collected during the lockdown and phase 1 of the transition, show that walking and cycling increased during this period. However there has also been a gradual increase in car journeys following an initial large reduction at the start of lockdown. [vii]Transport Scotland Covid-19 Transport Trend Data. https://www.transport.gov.scot/publications/?topic=63625

There were early indications that on certain roads (some motorways and trunk roads) the proportion of vehicles recording over the speed limits had risen during the period of the lockdown although the actual number of vehicles observed speeding had fallen by approximately 50% compared with a typical weekday or weekend prior to COVID restrictions. [viii]Parliamentary question on Covid-10 and answers by the Scottish Government Friday 15 May 2020. www.parliament.scot/S5ChamberOffice/20200515.pdf

An increasing volume of traffic on roads, some of which may be speeding, may impact on people’s safety when walking, wheeling or cycling and it is important to act to maintain the initial increase in active travel levels in the medium and longer term.

Transport Inequalities

Transport options are more limited for some households. For example:

  • Around 29% of households don’t have access to a car. This is more likely amongst low income and single pensioner households. [ix]Transport Scotland. Scottish Transport Statistics No. 38 2019 Edition. Edinburgh: Transport Scotland; 2020. https://www.transport.gov.scot/publication/scottish-transport-statistics-no-38-2019-edition/
  • Those on low income are more likely to travel by bus and walk to work and have less access to bicycles. [x]Transport and Travel in Scotland 2018: Results from the Scottish Household Survey: … Continue reading This can determine access to services and facilities.
  • A higher proportion of those with long term conditions “affecting day to day living a lot” compared with those with no long term limiting health problems do not have access to a car. [xi]Transport Scotland. Scottish Transport Statistics No. 38 2019 Edition. Edinburgh: Transport Scotland; 2020. https://www.transport.gov.scot/publication/scottish-transport-statistics-no-38-2019-edition/ Disabled people and those with long term health problems also experience significant transport barriers and often have more limited choices.[xii]Gates S et al. Transport and inequality: An evidence review for the Department for Transport. … Continue reading [xiii]Scottish Government National Transport Strategy: Protecting our climate and improving our lives. Edinburgh: Scottish Government Edinburgh; 2019. … Continue reading In relation to walking, wheeling and cycling, these barriers include the allocation and condition of road space.
  • Over a million people are at risk of transport poverty (Sustrans define this as people are deemed to be at risk of transport poverty when they don’t have access to essential services or work due to limited affordable transport options) in Scotland. Risk of transport poverty is considered to be greatest in areas with (relatively) low income, high car availability and low access to essential services by public transport. [xiv]Transport Poverty in Scotland, Sustrans 2016. www.sustrans.org.uk/media/2880/transport_poverty_in_scotland_2016.pdf

Current disruptions to and concern about the use of public transport [xv]COVID-19 Public Attitudes Survey Data: Wave 3. https://www.transport.gov.scot/publications/?topic=63625 may reduce the ability of these groups to reach essential employment and services, socially interact and undertake exercise or recreation. This will be particularly challenging for those who do not have access to private vehicles.

Developing the active travel infrastructure can increase transport options, particularly for these groups. [xvi]National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Physical activity and the environment Public Health Guideline ng90. 2018. https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng90 [xvii]Scottish Government National Transport Strategy: Protecting our climate and improving our lives. Edinburgh: Scottish Government Edinburgh; 2019. … Continue reading This means considering for example targeting the measures at the most deprived areas as well as routes which are especially unsafe or dangerous, so more people from these areas feel that they have better environments in which they can walk, wheel and cycle safely in their local areas.

This should be accompanied locally by measures that will address the barriers to active travel including those that improve perceptions of personal safety such as maintenance and lighting, inclusive cycling initiatives, cycling training programmes and provision of bike storage facilities.

Reducing the health impacts from road transport

Enabling greater levels of active travel will also go some way to reduce the negative impacts of road traffic on health and health inequalities. These include higher levels of traffic [xviii]NHS Health Scotland Place and Communities Inequality Briefing. Edinburgh: NHS Health Scotland; 2016. www.healthscotland.scot/publications/place-and-communities which increases exposure to air and noise pollution [xix]The Marmot Review: Implications for Spatial planning www.instituteofhealthequity.org/resources-reports/the-marmot-review-implications-forspacial-planning ; road traffic accidents [xx]The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents ‘Social Factors in Road Safety’ Policy Paper www.rospa.com/rospaweb/docs/advice-services/road-safety/social-factors-in-roadsafety.pdf ; injuries to both transport users and pedestrians; and community severance. [xxi]Douglas MJ et al. Health and Transport: A Guide. Scottish Health and Inequalities ImpactAssessment Network; 2018. … Continue reading

People in the poorest areas and those living on lower incomes are more likely to experience these impacts [xxii]Pearce JR, Richardson EA, Mitchell RJ, Shortt NK. Environmental justice and health: the implications of the socio-spatial distribution of multiple environmental deprivation for healthinequalities in … Continue reading even though they are less likely to have access to a car. People in low income communities are at higher risk from road crashes [xxiii] Douglas MJ et al. Health and Transport: A Guide. Scottish Health and Inequalities Impact Assessment Network; 2018. www.scotphn.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Transport-Guide2018-Final-Formatted.pdf and children on foot or bike in the most 20% deprived areas in Scotland areas are three times more likely to be involved in road accidents compared to the 20% least deprived areas. [xxiv]Geddes I, Allen J, Allen M, Morrisey L. The Marmot Review: Implications for Spatial planning. … Continue reading

Increasing the infrastructure for active travel can help reduce these negative health impacts particularly for those in the poorest areas and with the lowest incomes, as well as improving the environment. Following lockdown there were signs that air pollution caused by traffic, i.e. nitrogen dioxide levels, may have reduced. [xxv]A SPICE blog on air pollution during covid-19 lockdown. www.spicespotlight.scot/2020/05/07/guest-blog-has-the-coronavirus-covid-19-lockdown-reduced-airpollution/

Supporting people to continue to walk, cycle or wheel safely rather than use the car, especially for short local journeys, will help to maintain improved air quality with benefits for health and wellbeing. Lowering speed limits and introducing traffic calming measures, such as 20mph zones, has been found to reduce the risk of injury and death for pedestrians and cyclists. Targeting efforts to those neighbourhoods most in need can contribute to a reduction in inequalities in road casualties. [xxvi]NHS Health Scotland Place and Communities Inequality Briefing. Edinburgh: NHS Health Scotland; 2016. www.healthscotland.scot/publications/place-and-communities

In Summary

Measures to reduce the spread of Covid 19 are currently and will continue to influence the way we move around our communities. This presents challenges for those groups who experience few transport options. The measures funded by ‘Spaces for People’ have huge potential to support safe and active travel during the COVID-19 pandemic and as restrictions
are lifted.

Working with communities and linking with local public health and health improvement departments will help ensure that Spaces for People meets the needs of the local populations. This will help to protect and improve their health and wellbeing in both the short and longer term, and support the move towards a greener recovery.

You can download this article as a PDF here.

Ali MacDonald

Organisational Lead for Active, Healthy Environments,
Public Health Scotland

References

References
i Douglas MJ et al. Health and Transport: A Guide. Scottish Health and Inequalities Impact Assessment Network; 2018. www.scotphn.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Transport-Guide2018-Final-Formatted.pdf
ii Cooper E et al. Transport, health, and wellbeing: An evidence review for the Department for Transport. NatCen; 2019. https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/847884/Transport__health_and_wellbeing.pdf
iii NHS Health Scotland Place and Communities Inequality Briefing. NHS Health Scotland; 2016. www.healthscotland.scot/publications/place-and-communities
iv Public Health England. Spatial Planning for Health. An evidence resource for planning and designing healthier places. Public Health England; 2017. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/spatial-planning-for-health-evidence-review
v, xxiii Douglas MJ et al. Health and Transport: A Guide. Scottish Health and Inequalities Impact Assessment Network; 2018. www.scotphn.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Transport-Guide2018-Final-Formatted.pdf
vi, xiii, xvii Scottish Government National Transport Strategy: Protecting our climate and improving our lives. Edinburgh: Scottish Government Edinburgh; 2019. www.transport.gov.scot/media/47052/national-transport-strategy.pdf
vii Transport Scotland Covid-19 Transport Trend Data. https://www.transport.gov.scot/publications/?topic=63625
viii Parliamentary question on Covid-10 and answers by the Scottish Government Friday 15 May 2020. www.parliament.scot/S5ChamberOffice/20200515.pdf
ix, xi Transport Scotland. Scottish Transport Statistics No. 38 2019 Edition. Edinburgh: Transport Scotland; 2020. https://www.transport.gov.scot/publication/scottish-transport-statistics-no-38-2019-edition/
x Transport and Travel in Scotland 2018: Results from the Scottish Household Survey: https://www.transport.gov.scot/publication/transport-and-travel-in-scotland-results-from-thescottish-household-survey-1/
xii Gates S et al. Transport and inequality: An evidence review for the Department for Transport. https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/843487/Transport_and_inequality_report.pdf
xiv Transport Poverty in Scotland, Sustrans 2016. www.sustrans.org.uk/media/2880/transport_poverty_in_scotland_2016.pdf
xv COVID-19 Public Attitudes Survey Data: Wave 3. https://www.transport.gov.scot/publications/?topic=63625
xvi National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Physical activity and the environment Public Health Guideline ng90. 2018. https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng90
xviii, xxvi NHS Health Scotland Place and Communities Inequality Briefing. Edinburgh: NHS Health Scotland; 2016. www.healthscotland.scot/publications/place-and-communities
xix The Marmot Review: Implications for Spatial planning www.instituteofhealthequity.org/resources-reports/the-marmot-review-implications-forspacial-planning
xx The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents ‘Social Factors in Road Safety’ Policy Paper www.rospa.com/rospaweb/docs/advice-services/road-safety/social-factors-in-roadsafety.pdf
xxi Douglas MJ et al. Health and Transport: A Guide. Scottish Health and Inequalities Impact
Assessment Network; 2018. https://www.scotphn.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/TransportGuide-2018-Final-Formatted.pdf
xxii Pearce JR, Richardson EA, Mitchell RJ, Shortt NK. Environmental justice and health: the implications of the socio-spatial distribution of multiple environmental deprivation for health
inequalities in the United Kingdom. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers 2010; 35(4): 522-539
xxiv Geddes I, Allen J, Allen M, Morrisey L. The Marmot Review: Implications for Spatial planning. http://www.instituteofhealthequity.org/resources-reports/the-marmot-reviewimplications-for-spacial-planning
xxv A SPICE blog on air pollution during covid-19 lockdown. www.spicespotlight.scot/2020/05/07/guest-blog-has-the-coronavirus-covid-19-lockdown-reduced-airpollution/
Categories
Case Studies News Places for Everyone

Young artists create new mural on Glasgow’s South City Way

Run by Crossroads Youth & Community Association, The Barn is a space for young people in Laurieston and the Greater Gorbals to relax, have fun and receive the support that they need.

Youth Workers at the charity had been looking for a bold and creative way to make their organisation a destination point, in a way that also included the local community.

Their application to the South City Way Small Grants Fund proposed installing an artwork designed by young people in the area on at the front of their building.

Creative Planning

Created to inspire local community and charity groups to propose new gathering places and artworks along Glasgow’s South City Way, the Small Grants Fund offered these groups the chance to apply for a share of over £100,000 to fund their projects.

 The funding inspired local young people to tour the murals and street art around Glasgow in order to develop their own ideas. This took them along cycle paths and into unfamiliar parts of the city that they wouldn’t usually see.

The group then put their designs together for the new collective artwork on Abbotsford Place. A local artist was recruited to help with this process as well as to assist with spraying the final piece on the wall.

The charity name Crossroads and Youth Community Association is spread across the wall against the backdrop of a pastoral meadow. A quote from the group’s founder, Geoff Shaw, is also included, and reads: “Everyone has the right to live gloriously!”
The finished collective artwork at the youth centre on Abbotsford Place.

The completed piece sees the community group’s name Crossroads and Youth Community Association spread across the wall against the backdrop of a pastoral meadow. A quote from the group’s founder, Geoff Shaw, is also included, and reads: “Everyone has the right to live gloriously!”

They also installed planters and bike racks at the front of the centre.

Local Impact

Crossroads and Youth Community Association youth worker Nick Miller, saw The Barn project through to completion from the start.

‘Now you’re just drawn to the building, and through that we’ve had people dropping in and grabbing teas and coffees. We’ve had people taking photographs of stuff, and just leaving a couple of pounds donation. So hopefully it just draws more people to the building’.

Nick Miller, Youth Worker, Crossroads Youth and Community Association

Sustrans Officer Michael Melton, is delighted with the enrichment of the South City Way.

“The Barn stands out now as a safe and creative hub for young people to gather. The mural is a really valuable addition to the South City Way route and a great example of exactly what the Small Grants Fund is for”.

Michael Melton, Infrastructure Coordinator

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.

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Case Studies Engineering News

Off-road Midlothian walking and cycling link to support new housing development

Gilmerton to Shawfair ramp, Midlothian ©2019, Sustrans Scotland
An accessible ramp on a new traffic-free cycling and walking route connecting the Gilmerton and Shawfair communities in Midlothian. ©2019, Sustrans Scotland

Project managed by Sustrans Scotland’s Engineering team, and delivered in partnership with City of Edinburgh Council, Midlothian Council and contractors, RJ McLeod, the project aimed to anticipate the travel needs of future residents of a new housing development set for construction along the former railway line.

By creating arterial active travel infrastructure ahead of the housing development, Sustrans’ aim was to anticipate and shape the travel and leisure habits of future residents to the area.

The resulting 3km traffic-free route connects residents with local amenities including shops, schools, the train station and park and ride.

Sustrans’ engineering team project managed the installation a ramp link to Gilmerton Road, similar to the ramp at Old Dalkieth Road, alongside artworks at two locations.

It has also raised the profile of some of the fantastic commuter routes to Edinburgh City Centre that residents can now take advantage of.

The creation of the Loanhead Path Extension, was funded by Scottish Government through Sustrans National Cycle Network Development Programme.

Artworks

As part of the development of the path, two locations were selected for significant artworks by artists Susheila Jamieson and James Gordon and Andrea Geile.

The artists were selected based on their experience in public sculptures, their skills in involving members of the public with their projects and their fantastic initial ideas for what to create for the sites.

The resulting artworks have helped to increase the attractiveness of the route whilst creating distinctive focal points for path users.

STEM engagement sessions

Working in partnership with Sustrans Scotland’s I Bike team in Midlothian, Sustrans’ engineering and schools team worked with Danderhall Primary School in Midlothian, to deliver STEM curriculum-based lessons for local school pupils on the route.

Sustrans’ engineering team provided learning on some of the engineering and maths required to help build the path and Sustrans Ecologist taught pupils about the range of wildlife and biodiversity on the route.­­

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Behaviour Change Case Studies News Places for Everyone

Cooperation paves the way for the Strathmore Cycle Network

The Strathmore Cycle Network is an ambitious plan by three Community Development Trusts to create a cycle network between Alyth, Blairgowrie & Rattray, and Coupar Angus.

The idea of a traffic free path from Blairgowrie to Coupar Angus, giving locals an alternative to driving or using local bus services, was suggested at a Climate Café event in 2016. This spurred Alyth, Blairgowrie & Rattray, and Coupar Angus into applying for support from Sustrans’s Places for Everyone programme and regional transport partnership Tactran, with plans to deliver a phased network of walking and cycling routes between the three towns.

A Phased Approach

The first phase of the Strathmore Cycle Network was successful thanks to good engagement with local landowners. Working with the Development Trusts and with support from consultants Walking the Talk, they were able to apply to the Improving Public Access Fund, securing £200,000 for the construction of the first 2.5km of path link Alyth and Rattray.

The success of the plans boosted the community’s enthusiasm for the project, and led to the development of phase 2; Blairgowrie to Coupar Angus. The commitment of the volunteers in delivering the first phase impressed Perth and Kinross Council and led to £100,000 funding contribution.

Having a supportive member of the Perth & Kinross’ roads team on the steering group also proved invaluable. The officer was able to positively feedback to other officers in the Council, and offer support and expertise to the Development Trusts to ensure the project progresses smoothly.

Engaging the Community

Support from the Sustrans Places for Everyone programme and Perth & Kinross Council allowed the development trust to appoint the Scottish Community Development Centre to engage the local community. The initial route chosen by the Trusts was locally unpopular but by involving a neutral third party, the Trust were able to make sure there was an objective engagement process.

The engagement sessions worked well; two main route options emerged. Further discussion is on-going in an attempt to avoid a steep gradient, with the Trusts committed to work with the community and Sustrans to identify the best option. As there has been such positive public involvement so far, there is a strong willingness to find a solution and create this key part of the network

Successful Partnership Working

A group of people on bikes leaves a village centre.

The benefits of a Local Authority supporting in a community-led infrastructure project can be considerable. Many groups have huge amounts of enthusiasm and local knowledge to  take projects such as the Strathmore Cycle Network forward.

Development Trusts can be well placed to lead walking, cycling and wheeling projects. They are embedded in the community and often have experience of handling grant funding, working with elected members, and planning processes. Having multiple partners involved can open up additional funding potential. Each of the three Trusts has received grant funding for support activities, including staff time. This was a very deliberate move by the Trusts, and is a reflection of the strong working relationships that they have built. The model used by the three trusts could benefit many rural or sub-urban communities with poor connectivity.

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Behaviour Change Case Studies News Places for Everyone

Barriers to walking and cycling inspire new canal-side ramp

A cyclist arrives to join a led ride from Centre81

Inspired by residents’ reported barriers to walking and cycling, Clydebank Housing Association has been working to create a new accessible path between the Centre81 community centre and the Forth & Clyde Canal.

Working in partnership with Sustrans Scotland, Clydebank Housing Association (CHA) established a steering group with local residents to work out ways to encourage people to walk and cycle for more of their every-day trips.

Residents suggested that creating an accessible route from  Centre81, to the nearby canal towpath – part of National Cycle Network Route 754 – would help more people access the canal as well as local shops, bus links and other neighbourhoods along the canal.

Using local contacts and knowledge

CHA took on the task of working with the community to identify how best to design this path.

CHA made full use of its existing connections with groups throughout Clydebank. ISARO Social Integration Network – which works to promote integration and understanding amongst communities – provided support for the consultation, along with local disability groups, youth clubs and schools.

The honest feedback about the issues that visitors to Center81 faced on their everyday journeys gave CHA clear understanding of their needs and how they could be addressed through construction of a new access route.

Resources for Behaviour Change

Funding from other sources can help spur interest in walking and cycling in the local area. A successful bid to Keep Scotland Beautiful’s Climate Challenge Fund saw CHA work to refurbish bikes for people in the local area and provide maintenance training so people could keep their bikes on the road.

Led rides and social cycles also began and finished at Centre81, taking advantage of the café and other facilities. The new ramp will give ride groups direct access to and from the canal, avoiding an alternative narrow path. This will give people new or returning to cycling a safe, off-road link to practice and ride freely on.

Photograph: A poly-tunnel sits alongside some overgrown hedges at the side of Centre81
An area of land at the side of Centre81 will be ravamped for the ramp

Inspired by their work with local residents, CHA and their designers created six designs for the ramp. Feedback also came from local stakeholders, including planning and roads officers at West Dunbartonshire Council, representatives from Clydebank Community Council and community officers from Police Scotland. Work with Scottish Canals and Sustrans Scotland ensured that proposals fitted with the requirements around the canal and the National Cycle Network.

Ensuring that local residents and users of Centre81 remained involved, CHA presented the six designs to the community, who voted for their favourite. The successful project was put forward to Sustrans Scotland for Places for Everyone construction funding.

Sustrans awarded CHA £170,000 through the Places for Everyone programme to finalise the technical design of the ramp and carry out construction. The option choose by the community will include local history, artwork, colourful tarmac and lighting to create an interesting new place. The school are keen to contribute by creating content to make this new space reflect the history and culture of Clydebank.

Key Learning
Photograph: Staff from Clydebank Housing Association and Centre81 join a led ride from Centre 81 alongside a canal
Staff from Clydebank Housing Association and Centre81 join a led ride

This project shows how partnerships with other organisations can create additional capacity and make smaller projects easier to deliver.

CHA staff were confident in engaging with their community, but had no experience of delivering an infrastructure project. West Dunbartonshire Council did not have the capacity to work in-depth with the community to develop a proposal for the canal ramp.

By pooling their knowledge and expertise, the two organisations were able to work together to create a useful route which meets the needs of local people and encourages them to travel by foot and bike.

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Behaviour Change Case Studies News Places for Everyone

Creating new neighbourhood links in Toryglen

Through their work with local people, Glasgow-based charity Urban Roots realised that residents of a new housing development, funded as part of the regeneration of Toryglen, were finding it hard to access local services and greenspaces.

The charity applied for funding through Sustrans’ Places for Everyone programme to design local walking and cycling routes. These will link the new estate with nearby shops, football pitches and woodland.  

Listening to the needs of the community

To gather information on the links that would be most useful to the community, Urban Roots held focus groups tailored to their different volunteer groups, held engagements at existing meetings and ran standalone events.

Urban Roots works to support many vulnerable people and groups with protected characteristics. This experience and the trust built up with volunteers, locals and service users let them carry out in-depth consultation with groups that may have been hard to reach for a local authority or developer, including a mental health and wellbeing group and the Orchard Grove care home

The charity focused on identifying solutions to problems faced by the community in the area. They created concept boards to spark ideas at consultations. By working closely with the community and design agency LUC, Urban Roots were able to make sure that feedback from the targeted consultations was meaningfully translated into the concept designs. 

This meant the proposed designs suggested walking and cycling routes which recognised the everyday journeys made by local residents, formalised desire lines and which were accessible, safe and welcoming to all.

“I think this would be a great space to use and for everyone from elderly to disabled people. Really well thought about!”

Consultation Response

Changing local travel habits

Urban Roots used their consultations as a chance to find out more about individual and social barriers to walking and cycling in the area. This led to the charity setting up a behaviour change project in partnership with Camglen Bike Town.

The project supported local people to be more active in their everyday trips. Cycle training for adults and young people gave locals the confidence to use bikes to get around the local area. Bike maintenance sessions and guided rides help to make sure that people had the skills and knowledge to ride safely and confidently.

“ At Bike Town, we believe local communities and the organisations representing them are ideally placed to facilitate walking and cycling activities that support the development of new cycling active travel infrastructure. ”

Jim Ewing, Senior Team Leader, Camglen Biketown

Partnership working

Urban Roots were well placed to lead on the community engagement but did not have experience of project managing significant construction projects.

To take the designs forward, Urban Roots engaged with Glasgow City Council and local regeneration agency Clyde Gateway This has resulted in Clyde Gateway applying for £50,000 of detailed and technical design funding through the Places for Everyone fund, to further develop Urban Roots’ concept design work.

Key Learning

Community organisations have key local contacts and an understanding of their local area. Local authorities could contract them to help with the planning of new routes or to encourage a more meaningful engagement process.

Community organisations may also have capacity to help drive local authority projects and foster local ownership.

This approach could be replicated through all stages of a project, from initial design creation to supporting activities after construction and ongoing maintenance.

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Behaviour Change Case Studies News

Changing travel behaviour in Clackmannan Town

Clackmannan Development Trust was established to regenerate the town and make it a better place to live, work and visit.

A public consultation identified two key priorities for the group. Firstly, to make the town a more attractive place to spend time with and secondly, to improve links for people travelling by foot and bike.

A portion of £2.2million of funding was awarded to the Trust and Clackmannanshire Council through the closure of the local power station. This was used as match funding to work with Sustrans through its Places for Everyone fund.

This resulted in wider pavements, new trees planted, cycle parking installed and traffic restrictions at peak times outside Clackmannan Primary school.

Although the Trust’s remit was much wider than encouraging active travel in the town, they recognised how promoting walking and cycling activities could complement their other aims and objectives.

The achievements of CDT to date and their ambitious but deliverable programme shows that when communities and local authorities work effectively together, even smaller communities can achieve sustainable and prosperous futures”

Alan Murray, Traffic & Transportation Team Leader

Transforming the school run

To help encourage children to travel actively to school along the new route, the Development Trust set up ‘Saddle Up Clackmannan’. This led to:

  • The training of six volunteer ride leaders, who lead monthly rides to promote local routes
  • Regular cycle confidence and maintenance sessions
  • A fleet of bikes available to borrow free of charge.

Inspired by the popularity of the project, the Trust then applied for funding from Smarter Choices Smarter Places Open Fund to employ an Active Travel Coordinator.

The Coordinator delivered in-depth, tailored behaviour change programmes throughout the town. This helped encourage all residents to travel by foot or bike for more of their everyday journeys. 

Key Learning
Photograph: Five children on bikes in front of Clackmannan Primary School
Interventions on Port Street made it easier for pupils at Clackmannan Primary to get to and from school on foot, by bike or by scooter

After a new route has been built, it is important to think about how people may be supported and encouraged to use it.

Community based organisations, such as Development Trusts or charities can be well placed to help.

These activities don’t have to be led by a group that only focus on cycling or physical activity.

Even if there are currently no cycling or walking groups in an area, it doesn’t mean that there is not the desire or capacity to carry out active travel activities. Organisations working in other sectors will also have local knowledge and could be well placed to lead on these.

Next steps

Through the regeneration of Clackmannan, the Trust have developed a strong working relationship with the Traffic and Transportation team at Clackmannanshire Council.

The two groups share a long term vision for active and sustainable travel in the community. The Trust are now working with the Council to see if it would be possible to create new paths linking Clackmannan to other towns.

By creating a culture where it is normal to travel by bike or on foot, the Trust hope to show there is local demand for these projects.