Universal access to accessible, affordable and sustainable travel choices will be considered by senior councillors next week.
Leeds City Council’s draft ‘Connecting Leeds Transport Strategy’ aims to tackle the climate emergency, deliver inclusive growth, and improve the health and well-being of Leeds residents.
The six ‘big moves’ outlined in the strategy act as an action plan to create a people-first, affordable and integrated transport network across the city that isn’t reliant upon the private car.
The integration of more walking and cycling into our daily travel habits alongside the enhancement of public transport will help to reduce congestion, continue to improve air quality and lessen the impact on the environment when accessing education, employment, leisure opportunities and local services.
Creating healthier streets and communities is key to the improvement of the physical health and mental wellbeing of people living in, working in and visiting the city. It aligns with the ambition to achieve a net-zero carbon target by 2030 as well as deliver a low carbon mass transit network in partnership with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority.
To enable everyone to participate and help shape the Connecting Leeds transport strategy, city-wide consultations are planned for early 2021 in a Covid-safe manner.
The background and ambitious targets for the transport strategy means working towards our Climate Emergency carbon targets by 2030 and Vision Zero for no one to be killed or seriously injured on our roads by 2040. Also by 2030, travel mode choices need to change to meet these targets – as shown by the diagram.
Councillor Lisa Mulherin, Leeds City Council’s executive member for climate change, transport and sustainable development, said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has brought about fundamental changes to how we live, work and enjoy our city.
“The draft Connecting Leeds Transport strategy sets out ways in which we can improve the health and wellbeing of our communities with cleaner air and healthier streets.
“Moving our transport system towards a more accessible, active travel and public transport focused network, will allow us to achieve the Connecting Leeds vision of a city where a car is not required to meet mobility needs.
“We know that people are willing to make a switch to electric vehicles, use public transport more, reduce trips by car and walk, wheel or cycle for shorter journeys. But achieving net zero carbon by 2030 will require even bigger changes.
“As we begin the recovery from the Covid pandemic and focus on our aims to tackle the climate emergency and improve our health and wellbeing, every one of us needs to play our part in making the shift from over-reliance on the private car to public transport, walking, cycling and shared use of vehicles.”