Discussion started: 28/011/08
Discussion ended: 17/03/09
The Sustainable Travel Select Committee is a cross-party group looking at how the council can support people in switching from using their cars for some journeys. One of their meetings focused on walking. For this, they were particularly keen to hear your views about what would encourage you to walk more, whether for transport to school, work or other places, or walking for leisure and fitness. Your comments were presented to the select committee for a meeting held on 17th December. You can watch a webcast of this meeting through our webcast archives at www.bristol.gov.uk/webcast.
Questions we asked included:
- What would encourage you to walk more often for transport or leisure?
- What stops you from walking more often to get to places
- Are there journeys that you would like to walk but cannot, or find it difficult to walk? If so, for what reasons?
Check out a website that gives you walking routes, tells you how long the journey will take, and how many calories you will burn in the process! www.walkit.com/bristol
If you need motivation to travel by foot more often check out the walking works calculator which tells you home many mince pies you can treat yourself to when you choose to walk! www.walkingworks.org.uk/calculator
Thank you to those who took part in the walking discussion. There were interesting comments on the discussion forum about how to encourage people to walk around the city.
- Many comments were about pedestrian crossings, with some people thinking that the newer design of pedestrian crossing were not as good as the old style ones where you see the green/red man on the opposite side of the road.
- Areas looking run down and dirty were also a barrier to walking, particularly as they can make areas feel unsafe.
- There were a lot of comments about the need to resolve conflict between cyclists and pedestrians, with criticism of cyclists who break the highway code.
- There were a number of comments about physical barriers to walking, such as pavements too narrow, obstructions such as shop signs and cars parked on pavements.
- People were in favour of traffic free areas, with suggestions for closing some roads on a Sunday, more cul de sacs, and making the centre traffic free.
- More information such as signage and maps would make it easier for walkers, as would information about integrated public transport to access leisure walks.
- Comments about safety were about the danger from others and the need for improved street lighting and other measures. And also danger from cars, with lower speed limits and shared space suggested to improve safety.
The responses to the walking discussion were fed into the sustainable travel select committee. The select committee listened to experts and considered the public feedback and came up with the following recommendations about walking that were included in their final report:
Walking – page 6:
- I. The 2000 Walking Strategy should be reviewed as a matter of urgency.
- II. The revised Walking Strategy should include a timed plan for implementation.
- III. Ensure that dedicated walking and cycling networks are continuous, integral and signposted.
- IV. Improve priority signage for pedestrians and cyclists and ensure these are enforced.
- V. Review, and report on, the relevance of existing traffic signal timing and alter to reflect safety of pedestrians and cyclists as appropriate.
- VI. Audit and enforce minimum safe pavement widths for pedestrians, including attention to street furniture and car parking.