Connecting the region
The West of England Combined Authority is bringing partners together to improve transport across the region, to provide sustainable, long-term solutions to help people move around the region more easily, reducing congestion and improving the environment we live in.
We have recently declared a climate emergency and are committed to reducing carbon emissions through reducing traffic congestion to improve air quality and published the Joint Local Transport Plan 4. You can read the plan on this webpage https://travelwest.info/projects/joint-local-transport-plan.
The impact of coronavirus
The Coronavirus crisis has had a huge impact on the way we travel. As the regional transport authority, WECA is working with bus and rail operators to ensure that the transport network continues to operate safely with social distancing measures in place. We’ve also worked with businesses to share government travel advice and help them access sustainable travel support. Follow this link to find out more https://travelwest.info/businesses.
We want to capture the positive changes to travel habits during the crisis and significantly increase walking and cycling in the region to help reduce congestion and improve air quality. We’ve committed £13m to measures to help more people to cycle and walk in the region and launched a campaign to encourage residents to find joy in the journey when they walk or cycle. Read about our investment on this webpage https://www.westofengland-ca.gov.uk/13-million-investment-agreed-for-cycling-and-walking-measures/. Find out about our Joy In The Journey active travel campaign on this bespoke webpage https://travelwest.info/active-travel.
Investing in sustainable travel
We’ve already allocated millions to improving our busiest routes – including rail, public transport network improvements and walking and cycling routes.
metrobus -The region has 50km of metrobus routes. We are building on that success with extensions which will improve connections for local residents and access to job opportunities for many.
Metrowest – We have ambitious plans to significantly increase travel by rail working with the Government, Network Rail and Great Western Railway. This includes improving the Severn Beach line to provide direct more frequent services to Bath and Westbury, re-opening the Portishead line and providing more frequent services to Yate and Gloucester. This could generate over a million new rail journeys and give 80,000 more people access to train services.
Walking and cycling – WECA has committed £13m for measures to enable more people to walk and cycle to capture the changes in travel that coronavirus has brought. This is on top of investment in walking and cycling routes across the region including the 5km Bath River Line, Cribbs Patchway, Keynsham, Aztec West and Temple Quay. Our Cycling and Walking Plan outlines proposed investment in cycling and walking routes over the next 16 years. The plan can be viewed via this link https://travelwest.info/projects/local-cycling-and-walking-infrastructure-plan.
Innovating and adopting new ways to travel – We’ve got to find new ways of doing things, and the West of England Combined Authority is leading on work to assess a new and ambitious mass transport system and is investing in technology to make journeys easier.
Mass transit system – The West of England Combined Authority is leading on work to assess a new and ambitious mass transport system that will revolutionise the way we move people around the West of England, dramatically improving congestion and air quality while reducing our carbon emissions. We’re investing £1.5m to scope out potential demand for a mass transit system and its benefits for the region.
Smart technology We’re giving people travel and transport information in real time at their fingertips and integrating journey planning and payment to make it easier to make better choices and get to their destination in the fastest way possible.
Future Transport Zone -We’ve committed £4m to trial new ways of moving around the region. A trial of E scooters is one of the first projects that has been fast tracked following the coronavirus outbreak. Read more about this project by following this link https://www.westofengland-ca.gov.uk/infrastructure/future-mobility-zone/