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TRL Launches New Active Travel Audits Service for local authorities

TRL’s new active travel audit is intended to make it easier for local authorities to transition towards a more modern, multi-modal transport environment, with particular emphasis on creating spaces in which pedestrians and cyclists/micro mobility users can move around efficiently and safely.

TFL say: ‘Our approach is based on a comprehensive and holistic methodology assessing the street environment with the aim of improving provision. We use standardised assessments of the quality and characteristics of walking and cycling infrastructure and provide practical recommendations for improving the design, safety, legibility and comfort of the street environment.’

The audit pays particular attention to improving safety for women by addressing lighting, directness of routes and personal security.  It also covers accessibility, looking at factors such as surface gradients, tactile paving, kerb heights, lane widths and street clutter;

Finally, the audit looks at optimising the environment for the diversity in micro mobility by considering surface quality, lane widths, turning radii, and signage.

The Pedestrian review delivers a 55-point audit undertaken from the perspective of pedestrians, providing a holistic assessment of routes, links, crossings, spaces and public transport facilities while the cyclist/micromobility review presents 59 points which provide an in-depth assessment of links, junctions and routes, as well as cycle facility provision at interchanges and cycle parking. 

TRL was originally set up as the Road Research Laboratory in 1933 before being renamed the Transport and Road Research Laboratory in 1972. Nowadays it is a non-profit distributing organisation under which its profits are invested in its own research programmes.

Dr George Beard, Head of New Mobility at TRL said: ‘Through the Active Travel Audits, TRL is working to ensure that the street environment is safe and accessible for all, creating sustainable and efficient means of transportation. All roads should consider all users, including the most vulnerable. Through this service, we want to help councils make UK roads safer for all, while taking the next step forward in promoting safe active travel and micromobility.’

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