Categories
Case Studies News News & Opinion Places for Everyone Project/Department Filtering

£6.5m South City Way officially complete as route makes way through city centre

The final leg of the South City Way officially opened this week, ensuring more people than ever are able to safely walk, wheel and cycle to and from Glasgow city centre and along the Clyde via National Cycle Network Route 7.

The newly constructed route stretches from Queen’s Park to Trongate via a fully segregated 3km link, featuring significant improvements to junctions, pavements and street greenery.

The last section completed in June of this year allows people to safely navigate the city centre from Victoria Bridge to Trongate, a journeys time of just 14 minutes by bike from the Southside to the city centre.

Opening up opportunities

The route has improved local access to businesses in the Southside and improved the feel of the area. Sustrans/McAteer, 2023.

The South City Way is already proving hugely popular, with just over 3.9m journeys recorded along the route in the last three years, accounting for 13% of all trips undertaken along sections with new infrastructure.

Passing through Govanhill and the Gorbals, the route provides convenient access to a variety destinations on the way to the city centre, including schools, hospitals and places of worship.

Local businesses along the South City Way have also benefitted from the public space improvements.

Data collected by Sustrans’ Research and Monitoring Unit (RMU) in January of this year shows a 12% increase in retail favourability since the project was completed.

The South City Way passes by a variety of different destinations for all ages, inlcuding play parks and schools. Sustrans/McAteer, 2023.

Safety and accessibility has also been a key consideration for users along the route.

The provision of fully segregated cycleways, protected junctions, and new crossing points ensures that people of all abilities are kept safe from traffic, particularly benefitting vulnerable and less confident road users.

Health benefits are also evident in the improvements to air quality along the route.

Out latest research shows there has been a 53% decrease in carbon dioxide levels since the scheme was introduced, as well as a 75% drop in nitrogen oxides.

The most recent data collected by Sustrans on the South City Way can be accessed here.

Celebrating the city centre

People can now walk, wheel and cycle into the heart of the city centre from the Southside with ease. Sustrans/McAteer, 2023.

On Wednesday 17th June, community groups and those involved in the delivery of the South City Way project gathered at King’s Court to celebrate the route opening and for a tour of the newly completed section.

Karen McGregor, Scotland Director for Sustrans, spoke about the community benefits of the new route and the increasing appetite for safe active travel options. She said:

“The South City Way is changing people’s lives in Glasgow every day. By providing a direct and accessible route to and from the city centre, the South City Way is connecting people with schools, hospitals, and other employment opportunities.”

“With almost 50% of people Glasgow wanting to walk, wheel and cycle more, we need to deliver more segregated routes like the South City Way to link up key destinations for active travel whilst also keeping people safe and protected from traffic.”

Fiona Hyslop MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Transport, was present for a tour of the learn more about the project designs and how the South City fits into wider plans for the city. She said:

“This investment of over £3.6million by the Scottish Government is helping us to build a more active nation, where more people choose to walk, wheel and cycle for shorter everyday journeys and can take climate action.  In doing so, we’re empowering people and with healthier and happier travel options – and building thriving communities, where businesses can flourish and everyone can enjoy improved public spaces.

“Through our continued investment in active travel, I look forward to seeing more infrastructure which is similar in the scale and success of the South City Way, in towns and cities right across Scotland.”

The bidirectional and segregated design of the route keeps people protected from traffic. Sustrans/McAteer, 2023.

Councillor Angus Millar, City Convener for Transport in Glasgow, who was also in attendance, said:

“Many people want to get about by bike and other modes of active travel but are often put off by safety concerns. It is essential we respond to the desire to travel more often by walking, wheeling and cycling by create a safer environment for this kind of transport.

“Active travel is a cleaner, cheaper and healthier form of travel that can also help to create a more efficient transport network overall. More people making better use of limited road space helps the city’s network run more efficiently and that will make it easier for everyone to get about Glasgow.”

Almost £3.8million in funding for the South City Way was awarded through Places for Everyone, an active travel infrastructure fund backed by Transport Scotland and administered by Sustrans.  The remaining funding was supplied through Glasgow City Council.

Categories
Case Studies News News & Opinion Places for Everyone Project/Department Filtering

Construction starts on new multi-million pound accessible path network in Arbroath

On Wednesday 3rd April, construction officially began on the landmark Arbroath A Place for Everyone project.

The £14m project, £10.7m of which has been awarded through Sustrans Scotland’s Scottish Government-backed Places for Everyone programme, is set to deliver a transformative network of all new walking, wheeling and cycling routes throughout the town.

This aims to neatly link up key travel destinations, such as shopping areas and schools, as well as popular tourist sites.

The project will also conveniently tie with National Cycle Network Route 1, which runs along the seafront from Dundee and up to Aberdeen, further cementing links between settlements along the coast.

Backed by extensive engagement with the local community, the emerging work is expected to help foster the conditions for a significant boost to the local economy via increased footfall to businesses and an uptick in tourism to the seafront.

Once completed, it is hoped by many that the project will serve as the backbone for future active travel initiatives in the area.

History in the making

Designs for Guthrie Port include tree and wildflower planting as well as public seating areas. Angus Council ©2023

The delivery of the Arbroath project has been hotly anticipated by many for some time, with early community consultation dating back to 2015.

Financial support was initially received in 2019 via Sustrans’ Places for Everyone programme, which at the time made Arbroath the first town in Scotland to receive such a high level of funding through the Scottish government-backed scheme.

Years of careful design and planning work, informed by and acting on feedback from the local community, were then carried out between the partnership of Sustrans, Angus Council, and Arcadis.

Following this process, proposals are now being taken forward to create:

  • A new 1.5km, segregated cycleway alongside the A92 dual carriageway from the West Links area of the town to Arbroath Abbey, with a link-in to Brockthock Bridge. 
  • Redesigned junctions and crossings, making it safer and easier to walk, wheel and cycle. 
  • As well as new seating and landscapes, improving the accessibility of public spaces and encourage safer walking, wheeling and cycling options throughout the town
The junction at Brockock Bridge includes a new bidirectional cycleway with strategic crossings. Angus Council ©2023

Current traffic levels showed that large parts of the project could be achieved by repurposing parts of the A92 dual carriageway, which has long created a sense of division across Arbroath.

Working in tandem with the local community, the proposed designs were gradually enhanced, including the introduction of temporary trial measures in 2021 to help those living and working in the town get a feel for the project.

Celebrating strong partnership

Despite a persistent downpour outside the Signal Tower Museum, the first spade was determinedly dug in by Angus Council Leader Cllr Beth Whiteside.

Carole Patrick, Portfolio Director for Sustrans, was witness to the big moment.

“We’re overjoyed to see construction starting on this fantastic project. By delivering new cycle lanes, tree and wildflower planting, as well as paved seating areas in the town, people living and working in Arbroath will be able to walk, wheel and cycle safely, whilst also enjoying a more relaxed and attractive environment.”

Carole Patrick, Portfolio Director, Sustrans

Both were joined by Active Travel Spokesperson Cllr Serena Cowdy, as well as Contracts Manager for Balfour Beatty Keith McDonald and Project Manager for Balfour Beatty Tom Truesdale.

“Today’s milestone marks several years of consultation, planning and effort to create and see come to fruition, an ambitious project that will make Arbroath a more desirable place to live in, work in and to visit.”

Councillor Serena Cowdy, Active Travel Spokesperson, Angus Council

There’s a great deal to look forward to over the next year as the project truly starts to take shape, with construction the project is set to be complete by the end of 2025.


Categories
Case Studies News News & Opinion Places for Everyone Project/Department Filtering

New multi-million pound cycling route in Edinburgh city centre officially open

On Wednesday 20th March, members of the local community and key delivery partners turned out in number to commemorate the close of construction on the CCWEL project in Edinburgh.

Stretching from Roseburn to Leith Walk via Haymarket and the West End, CCWEL provides a safe and direct segregated route through the heart of the city centre, as well as significantly enhancing streets for those walking, wheeling and spending time there.

Local primary school pupils took part in a group ride from Old Colt Bridge to Haymarket to test out the route, arriving at Haymarket in time to take part in the festivities.

Music to welcome the group ride was performed by St Mary’s Music School pupils and a range of fun activities, including cargo bike trials, were on offer for all those who attended.

Shortly after lunchtime, a ribbon to mark the official opening of the route was cut to usher the new city centre route into being.

Setting the standard

Segregated cycleways, resurfaced footways, and improved crossings are key features of the new CCWEL route. City of Edinburgh Council ©2024

Following an extensive consultation process beginning in 2016, the input of residents and local businesses helped shape the designs put forward by Sustrans and Edinburgh City Council, and construction got firmly underway on CCWEL in early 2022.

With works carried out by Balfour Beatty, CCWEL has set a benchmark for how safe and accessible walking, wheeling and cycling can be delivered amongst within bustling urban centre such as Edinburgh. The first of its kind to be complete in Scotland, CCWEL delivers a 3.6km bidirectional cycle route to better connect Roseburn with Leith Walk via Haymarket and the West End.

For the vast majority of the journey, cyclists are protected from heavy traffic flows through a segregated design, meaning vulnerable and less confident cyclists will be able to use the new paths in safety and ease.

CCWEL hasn’t just delivered new routes for cyclists, however. Improved crossings, footways, and street surfacing have also been introduced as part of the scheme, as well as street greening initiatives and additional seating areas for people to relax and enjoy.

The opening comes just a day after the launch of the 2023 Walking and Cycling Index report in the capital, which includes amongst its findings that almost 50% of residents in Edinburgh want to walk, wheel and cycle more.

An historic occasion

A group ride was completed from Roseburn to Haymarket by local primary school pupils to inaugurate the new route. City of Edinburgh Council ©2024

Karen McGregor, Scotland Director for Sustrans, was delighted to see the new route completed.

“The City Centre West to East Link is an absolute game-changer within the world of active travel. For the first time ever in Scotland, we’ve delivered a fully segregated walking, wheeling and cycling connection that cuts through the heart of a major city centre. In doing so, this fantastic new route gives the people of Edinburgh a safe and accessible driving alternative, allowing people to get to where they want, how they want, regardless of age or ability.”

Karen McGregor, Scotland Director, Sustrans

Councillor Scott Arthur, who joined the group ride from Roseburn to Haymarket, said:

“Today we celebrated a major development for walking, wheeling and cycling in the Capital, with the completion of CCWEL. This major scheme is not only one of the largest pieces of active travel infrastructure delivered in Edinburgh, but it has transformed spaces along the route for the use and enjoyment of people who live, visit and work here.”

Councillor Scott Arthur, Transport and Environment Convener, City of Edinburgh Council

In total, £23m was invested in the design and construction of the CCWEL route.

Of this, £14.8m was awarded from Transport Scotland through Sustrans’ Places for Everyone programme, with the additional funding from the Scottish Government and the Council’s transport budget.

Going forward, CCWEL will link up with the George Street and First New Town and Meadows to George Street project, which aim to deliver improved walking, wheeling and cycling infrastructure across the Edinburgh city centre and enhance high-traffic public spaces for generations to come.

The project also neatly connects with the Roseburn to Union Canal project, which is set to finish construction in Summer 2024.

Categories
Case Studies News News & Opinion Places for Everyone Project/Department Filtering

Work begins to link up communities in East Renfrewshire

New year, new walking wheeling and cycling links

On 12 January 2024, a groundbreaking ceremony was held to mark the start of construction on the ambitious £22.68 million project to upgrade and improve Aurs Road in East Renfrewshire.

The project will not only create a safer, more direct local route between Barrhead and Newton Mearns by straightening out the carriageway and replacing a weak road bridge, it will also open up all new possibilities for walking, wheeling and cycling.

£8.19 million of funding provided by Places for Everyone will deliver a new 2km active travel route between the two adjacent communities, as well as an impressive 700m waterside promenade overlooking Balgray Reservoir.

As a result of the project, residents and visitors will now be able to make safer, healthier and more sustainable everyday journeys between Barrhead and Newton Mearns.

The new waterside promenade also offers the communities an accessible space to relax or meet up with friends and family.

Further plans as part of the wider Aurs Road project include a new 4km circular route around the perimeter of Balgray Reservoir, providing unprecedented access to Dams and Darnley Country Park.

Once complete, a new accessible waterside promenade will offer people a place to relax, socialise and enjoy the scenery of Balgray Reservoir. Credit: East Renfrewshire Council

Making connections outside of the city

Often, outside of our city and town centres, a lack of safe and accessible walking, wheeling and cycling infrastructure and patchy public transport links can leave communities feeling disconnected.

For households without access to a car, it also means that reaching essential, everyday destinations like their places of work, shops or health services can be difficult.

We’ve already seen the value that new walking, wheeling and cycling connections can deliver to smaller communities through Places for Everyone projects like the  completed in partnership with Scottish Borders Council in 2023.

The Balgray Active Travel Links project is another clear example of how Local Authority ambition can boost independence and choice in how communities get around, whilst also forging new links and connections.

With a combined population of almost 50,000 people, the potential impact on local travel habits throughout Barrhead and Newton Mearns can’t be overstated.

The project aims to transform journeys between Barrhead and Newton Mearns by straightening Aurs Road and building a new walking, wheeling and cycling route alongside Balgray Reservoir. Credit: East Renfrewshire Council

Partnered in community celebration

In truly frosty conditions, representatives of the project delivery teams gathered alongside Aurs Road to formally inaugurate the construction.

Karen McGregor, Scotland Director for Sustrans, shared her thoughts:

“Improving active travel links between communities outside of our cities is vital.”

“This project does exactly that by delivering an accessible and direct walking, wheeling and cycling link between Barrhead and Newton Mearns for residents and visitors alike.”

“We’re absolutely delighted to see work now starting on this project and grateful to all those who have taken part in making it a success.”

Karen McGregor, Scotland Director, Sustrans

East Renfrewshire Council Leader Owen O’Donnell added:

“Since announcing our plans for transforming Aurs Road, we’ve had a fantastic response from residents who are excited about the delivery of a much needed improved and straightened road with active travel link.”

Owen O’Donnell, Leader, East Renfrewshire Council

Signed diversion routes are in place via Stewarton Road, Nitshill Road and Darnley Road.

Funding for the wider £22.68 million Aurs Road project was received from the Glasgow City Region City Deal, made up of funding from the UK and Scottish Government and East Renfrewshire Council, the Scottish Government’s Bridge Fund, and developer contributions from new house building projects in the area.

£8.19 million was received for the Balgray Active Travel Links project through the Places for Everyone fund, which is backed by Transport Scotland and administered by Sustrans.

Categories
News News & Opinion Places for Everyone Project/Department Filtering

Key updates for Places for Everyone community group partners

Future of the fund

Increasing the pace and scale of delivery of active travel infrastructure across Scotland has brought about a major period of transition for both Sustrans and Places for Everyone.

As previously communicated in November 2023, only Local Authorities, Regional Transport Partnerships and National Parks are currently eligible to apply for new Concept (Stages 0-2) funding awards. Existing community groups can still apply for Design (Stages 3-4) funding if they have completed stage 2, applications for which will reopen on 20th March 2024.

Further to this, as Places for Everyone develops greater alignment with Transport Scotland’s Active Travel Infrastructure Fund (ATIF), the Places for Everyone programme will be drawing to a close by December 2025.

Whilst we recognise this will be disappointing, in order to ensure that existing community-led group projects are able to reach key milestones and successfully deliver through to construction, we want to identify and support all projects with your routes to delivery, supporting or facilitating discussions with relevant third parties where appropriate.

Routes to delivery

In the financial year 2024-25 Sustrans will continue to fund and manage Concept (Stages 0-2) to Design (Stages 3-4) stages. Projects with existing awards will continue until the end of your current legal agreement, end of stage where you are able to apply for this and secure a funding award, or until September 2025.

Existing community groups and organisations other than Local Authorities, Regional Transport Partnerships and National Park Authorities will be eligible to request new Construction (stages 5-7) funding via Places for Everyone during 2024/25 provided delivery can be complete by September 2025. Construction (stages 5-7) funding decisions will be made on the basis of yet to be scheduled Extraordinary Decision Making Panels.

Actions for community groups

If your project is working towards completion of Design (Stage 4) with a view to requesting Construction (Stages -5-7) funding, please discuss this with your Grant Advisor and submit an outline request expressing interest for Construction (Stages 5-7) funding indicating the timing and amount by email to PlacesForEveryone@Sustrans.org.uk.

Please also ensure to confirm when you expect to submit your final Design (Stage 4) deliverables for review so we can identify your route to delivery and anticipate funding demands and the timing of this. Requests for Construction (Stages 5-7) funding will need to demonstrate assured completion by September 2025. Construction (Stages 5-7) requests are required by deadline of 29th April 2024.

We want to thank our community group partners during this uncertain period, and to reiterate that the Places for Everyone team remains able to support projects that can complete design stages or construction by September 2025. Community-led projects occupy a unique and vital role within the active travel delivery landscape. We encourage community group partners to continue working with local authorities to discuss your route to delivery to see your ambitions progressed. 

Categories
News News & Opinion Places for Everyone Research and Monitoring

Places for Everyone 2021-22 Report Released

The Research and Monitoring Unit (RMU) at Sustrans have now published their report on the impact of the Places for Everyone programme, based on evaluation undertaken in the 2021-22 period.

Analysing data taken from 30 different projects across the history of the programme, and five case studies evaluated during 2021-22, the findings demonstrate how the Places for Everyone programme is continuing to deliver safer and more accessible walking, wheeling, and cycling opportunities across Scotland.

Following improvements to Lower Granton Road, 97% of users said that the path felt safe during the day with 89% agreeing the route felt safe with regard to motor traffic. Credit: Colin Hattersley/Sustrans, 2018.

The five new project case studies featured within the 2021-22 report include path improvements introduced along Lower Granton Road in Edinburgh, as well as an evaluation of the Lochindaal Way, a new traffic-free active travel route connecting two rural Islay communities.

Due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the delivery and subsequent monitoring of Places for Everyone projects, the scope and focus of the 2021-22 report was strategically altered to prioritise case study evaluation.

Nonetheless, these results clearly show the value Places for Everyone projects have brought to local communities across the country and how the programme is delivering on Transport Scotland’s Active Travel Outcomes.

All cyclists interviewed and most of pedestrians felt either safe or very safe when using the protected junctions on the South City Way. Credit: McAteer/Sustrans, 2023.

To read the Places for Everyone 2021-22 Infrastructure Impact Summary Report, click on either of the links below: 

Places for Everyone 2021-22 Infrastructure Impact Summary Report
Places for Everyone 2021-22 Infrastructure Impact Summary Report – Easy Read

To receive further information and access to the full Places for Everyone 2021-22 Infrastructure Impact Report please contact rory.mitchell@sustrans.org.uk

Categories
Case Studies News News & Opinion Places for Everyone

The active travel network delivering for young people in Stirling

Making it easier and safer for people to travel actively is vital for increasing the number of everyday walking, wheeling, and cycling journeys.

This means ensuring that everyone, including those groups that are most vulnerable on the road, are adequately protected.

For example, children and young people.

Places for Everyone is working with partners across Scotland to ensure that the routes we deliver are accessible and intuitive for all ages and abilities.

The Walk Cycle Live Stirling project is an excellent example of how bold yet careful designs can be used to prioritise the needs of young Scots.

Routes to success

As the main connecting route between the city centre and university, Causewayhead has massively benefitted from accessible cycling infrastructure. Copyright: Sustrans, 2023.

Children and young people regularly make essential active journeys as part of their everyday lives.

From going to and from school to seeing friends and family, walking wheeling and cycling are the earliest available modes which allow children and young people to travel independently.

Currently under construction, the £9.5m Stirling project will soon deliver an extensive network of new walking, wheeling, and cycling links across the city.

This will not only facilitate more active journeys between residential areas, transport hubs, as well as retail and hospitality venues but also key destinations for education and learning.

Traffic-calming measures and landscaping improvements have made Albert Place a more welcoming and enjoyable place for all ages. Copyright: Sustrans, 2023.

Delivered in partnership with Stirling Council, Walk Cycle Live Stirling proposes to create two major routes:

Route one, dubbed the University route, will provide a safe and accessible route between Stirling Train station and the University of Stirling, taking in iconic landmarks like Old Stirling Bridge and the National Wallace Monument along the way.

Route two, the College Route, aims to bridge the gaps between Forth Valley College and the City Centre along Albert Place, Dumbarton Road and Raploch Road, passing under the impressive shadow of Stirling Castle.

The new segregated cycle lane along Dumbarton road helps keep young people safe from heavy traffic and encourages active journeys to and from Forth Valley College. Copyright: Sustrans, 2023.

Each of these strategic corridors has been designed to be largely segregated from the traffic via physical barriers, providing comfort and reassurance for all users.

Generational change

Healthier than other modes, travelling by bike is also often cheaper more affordable than public transport and private vehicle use.

Factors such as these are ones which young adults, in particular, benefit from.

Alex Avallone, a recent graduate from the University of Stirling, shared their thoughts on what the project could mean for current and prospective students in the years to come:

“I didn’t cycle when I was studying, mostly because the roads were too busy and I didn’t feel confident doing so. I took the bus or walked. Now, I hope a lot of people will think twice and choose to cycle instead”

Alex Avallone, Graduate, The University of Stirling

Katherine Henebry, Senior Grant Advisor at Sustrans, has been working on Walk Cycle Live Stirling throughout its construction, and has high hopes for its grand opening:

“After completion, children and young people can safely travel independently along two key corridors in Stirling. These routes are a new start for foundational memories to be made – on the journey to school, as well as in the broader exploration of their hometown’s rich history and environment. We’re so proud to have worked with Stirling Council to make these journeys a reality”

Katherine Henebry, Senior Grant Advisor, Sustrans

Due be complete by Summer 2024, Walk Cycle Live Stirling is set to connect communities in the city and surrounding areas through active travel in a major way. This will be particularly transformative for children and young people.

The project received £7.1m in funding from Places for Everyone, as well as £2.5m of Scottish Government investment from the City Region Deal and £258k from Stirling Council’s developer contributions allocation.

Categories
News News & Opinion Places for Everyone

Changes to Places for Everyone and 2024/25 decision making timeline

2023/24 Forecasting

Thank you to all those who have continued to submit monthly financial information via the new portal system. If you have not done so, please bring your forecasting up to date as a matter of urgency.

As previously communicated, grants for 2023/24 cannot be accrued into 2024/25. Therefore, Places for Everyone must understand any need to carry forward grant by 31st October 2023, in order to request additional funds from the 2024/25 budget.

Should you incur an un-forecasted underspend in the current financial year (2023/24) and require additional funds in 2024/25, your request will only be considered once all other projects have received funding.

Concept and Design Funding

  • The application portal will be open for applications for funding towards Concept (Stages 0-2) and Design (Stages 3-4), for both new and existing projects, from the 29th November 2023.
  • Only Local Authorities, Regional Transport Partnerships and National Park Associations will be eligible to apply for funding towards new projects at this time; however existing projects being progressed by other organisations will continue to be supported and will be able to access funding for subsequent project stages.
  • The table below outlines the key dates for Decision Making Panels to be held in March and June 2024.
  • For existing projects, to ensure adequate time for final deliverables to be assessed and feedback provided, a prior deadline for submission for stage review has been set. This change will mean that the application for a continuation of funding will be greatly simplified, assuming all previous deliverables have been submitted to your Grant Advisor.
  • As with previous years, we are unable to publish an exact date for award of funding. However, we have aligned the assessment and decision-making process with when we expect to receive confirmation of funding from Transport Scotland and hope to be able to confirm the first wave of funding before Easter 2024.
  • Funding will continue to be awarded towards the same groups of stages. However, in line with recent communications from Transport Scotland, all funding will need to be spent by 31st March 2025. Funding for activities to complete the relevant stage group (Stages 2 or 4) in the 2025/26 financial year will, however, be awarded in principle.

Table of Decision Making Panels

Please note dates marked with an * have been altered due to our ongoing funding discussions with Transport Scotland. Dates may be subject to further change as our discussions progress. We’ll notify you as soon as any changes are confirmed.

2024

10th January 2024/25 Application Deadline (Round 1) 
28th March*Stages 3-4 Panel 
March-April  Stages 3-4 Grant Awards Announced
10th April Grant claim deadline for 2023/24 projects
15th April*Open for 2024/25 Round 2 Applications (Stages 3-4 only. At this time, we do not expect to have another Stage 0-2 grant for funding this financial year)
19th April*Deadline to submit deliverables for Stage Review for projects moving to Stages 3-4 (Round 2) 
TBC*Stages 0-2 Round 1 Grant Awards Announced 
6th May*2024/25 Application Deadline (Round 2)  
24th June Stages 3-4 Panel 
TBC*Stages 3-4 Grant Awards Announced 
Dates have been updated in April 2024

Construction Funding

  • As part of the ongoing Transport Scotland Active Travel Transformation Project (ATTP), the award of new construction funding will be made directly by Transport Scotland from 2024/25 onwards. All new construction applications from Local Authorities, Regional Transport Partnerships and National Park Associations should now be directed to the ATTP Fund for 2024/25, more on which will be communicated once Transport Scotland has shared further information.
  • Organisations other than the above will be eligible to receive construction funding via Places for Everyone during 2024/25, decisions on which will be made on the basis of Extraordinary Decision Making Panels. If this applies to your project, please discuss this with your Grant Advisor and submit an outline request to PlacesForEveryone@Sustrans.org.uk, confirming when you expect to submit your final stage 4 deliverables for review.
  • Places for Everyone will continue to fund existing construction commitments and any existing commitments made in principle, through to completion.
  • Places for Everyone will continue to support change controls to existing commitments.
Categories
News

Protected: Oct 2023 – All awards (Stages 0-7)

This content is password protected. To view it please enter your password below:

Categories
Case Studies News News & Opinion Places for Everyone

How smart infrastructure can help build a sustainable future

Increasing walking, wheeling, and cycling are all great ways improve physical and mental health.

However, active journeys are also a key part of the national response to the climate emergency, and our overall ambition to reach net zero carbon emissions.

Through Places for Everyone, Sustrans is working with partners all across Scotland to deliver safe and accessible active travel infrastructure.

This includes new connections linking up isolated rural communities as well as expansive city-wide networks to help people get where they need to go.

As part of this, we want to ensure that every one of our projects is delivered in as sustainable a way as possible to reduce our own carbon emissions.

So how can we do it?

Outlining the techniques

How we approach the design and procurement of construction materials during project delivery can have a big impact on our carbon output. 
 
When delivering infrastructure, it is helpful to think about what we can avoid, what we switch to as an alternative, and also what we can improve in the process.

What to avoid

Reducing the need for new construction can significantly increase project sustainability.

This might mean finding different ways to meet your goals without building new infrastructure at all, or by simply making the most out of what already exists through reuse or repurposing.

This approach encourages us to think creatively and sustainably to minimize new constructions. 

  • Utilising existing pathways: Before considering new constructions, explore if there are existing pathways that can be renovated or repurposed to suit the needs of the project. This might include old railway paths commonly used by the National Cycle Network, or old bridges that are no longer suitable for heavy vehicles but can carry lower loads.
  • Multi-purpose facilities: Rather than building new assets, we can design spaces that serve multiple purposes, thus reducing the overall need for new constructions.
  • Community Engagement: Engaging with the community can sometimes reveal alternatives and local insights that help in avoiding new constructions. For instance, local communities might propose efficient ways to repurpose existing assets that outsiders might not be aware of.
Forres Roysvale Park

In partnership with Moray Council, the Forres Roysvale Park project shows how excess road space can be used to implement sustainable drainage solutions. By narrowing the existing carriageway, a 3-metre-wide shared use path was introduced alongside tactical rain gardens. This not only provided a safe and direct link between Forres Academy and Applegrove primary and nearby residential areas, but also served to alleviate surface water issues. 

Where to switch

Opting for alternatives without compromising on quality can result in major savings to your carbon footprint.

This might involve changing the project scope, redesigning the approach, choosing different materials, or technologies that are more eco-friendly.

  • Sustainable Materials: Using recycled or recovered materials can significantly reduce the carbon emissions associated with the production of new materials.
  • Low Carbon Technologies: Leveraging technologies that are more energy-efficient or that have a lower environmental impact, e.g., using electric plant vehicles used in construction.
  • Nature-Based Solutions: Taking advantage of nature-based solutions, like creating green corridors which not only facilitate active travel but also enhance biodiversity.
  • Permeable pavements: Using permeable pavements can aid in water management, reducing the need for separate drainage systems.
Loans to Troon Railway

In partnership with South Ayrshire Council and Ayrshire Roads Alliance, an all-new traffic-free route to join the settlements of Loans and Troon was completed in 2023. As well as providing a key active travel link, the Loans to Troon route is notable for being constructed from almost entirely recycled paving materials. This serves to create an affordable, long-lasting but also sustainable connection between key trip generators, such as Marr College and Troon train station.

How to improve

Increasing the sustainability of the materials being used for construction can sway the carbon output of a project significantly.

This can involve thinking about the longevity and durability of the materials being used and, ultimately, planning for its reuse or recycling.

  • Circular Economy Principles: Applying circular economy principles might mean designing assets that can be easily dismantled and the materials reused or recycled, thereby reducing waste.
  • Long-life, low maintenance materials: Reducing the need to maintain and increasing time before resurfacing is needed in the future will help reducing carbon emitted during the lifetime of an asset.
  • Native landscaping: Integrate local plants alongside paths. These require less water and maintenance, sequester carbon, and enhance the appeal of the path, encouraging more use.
  • Inclusive Design and Aesthetic Design: Ensuring the pathway is accessible to people of all ages and abilities not only promotes inclusivity but also encourages more people to use the pathway, potentially reducing carbon emissions from reduced car use. Making the pathway attractive, possibly through the inclusion of art installations or well-designed green spaces, can encourage more people to use it, fostering a sense of community while also reducing carbon emissions through reduced car usage.
Roseburn to Union Canal

With the City of Edinburgh Council, work is underway to link the Union Canal with the North Edinburgh Path Network via a new traffic-free route. Inaccessible areas of decaying shrubland will be restored via tree planting and community gardens. This not only delivers a valuable connection from north to south, but also a new green corridor.

The above guidelines have been categorised according to the PAS 2080 Carbon Management in Infrastructure standard, which supports organisations wanting to lower emissions from their construction activities.

For further information, please see the Carbon Management in Buildings and Infrastructure report.