Neighbourhood Planning and Transport Decarbonisation Toolkit
We created a toolkit to help communities decarbonise their local transport via neighbourhood plans, suggesting detailed strategies to adopt sustainable transport policies in neighbourhood plans and providing good practice examples.
Since its introduction, neighbourhood planning has been proved to be very popular, with 2882 neighbourhood planning areas designated and 1292 plans that have passed local referenda to become part of the statutory development plans for their local area. A recent study commissioned by DLUHC found that the climate emergency featured strongly in virtually all the plans they scanned, demonstrating communities’ willingness to tackle climate change from the bottom up. However, researchers also pointed out that many of these plans do not have a measurable and tangible action plan to deliver a lower carbon future; and much less a low carbon transport future.
This is a missed opportunity. Although most transport powers rest with the County Council or Unitary Authorities as the statutory local transport authorities, neighbourhood planning can help reduce the need for car journeys and enable people to make sustainable transport choices by influencing the location, scale, density, design, and mix of land uses at the neighbourhood level. The thrust of neighbourhood planning as a tool to decarbonise local transport is that innovation, solutions, and policies all come from the community and are then tested by all the residents through a local referendum. Therefore, in order to empower communities and to lead change to a just transition to lower carbon futures from the bottom up, it is crucial to identify practical ways of integrating sustainable transport policies into neighbourhood planning.
To help communities, we created a toolkit to decarbonise local transport via neighbourhood plans, suggesting detailed strategies to adopt sustainable transport policies in neighbourhood plans and providing good practice examples.
The toolkit sets out detailed strategies to adopt sustainable transport policies in neighbourhood plans and provides good practice examples. Its intended audience are neighbourhood forums and parish and town councils in England who are producing, or planning to produce, a neighbourhood plan. It is also aimed at Local Planning Authorities and Local Transport Authorities who are helping communities in the development of neighbourhood plans within their boundaries. This toolkit advocates a community-led, place-based approach to decarbonise local transport. This means that appropriate strategies and plans must come from the community (bottom up) and be tailored to the unique opportunities and challenges of the neighbourhood area. Therefore, this toolkit is designed in such a way to provide generic principles and methods of thinking that underpin a transport decarbonisation strategy. It also provides recent good practice examples from adopted neighbourhood plans to demonstrate how generic principles can be applied in real life.