Before any infrastructure - be it roads, parking, buildings or any other attraction, is considered the owner needs to know as well as possible if the new infrastructure will work in practice and any impact it might have on the local environment. The promoter or funding agency also needs to have an understanding of its long term financial impact.
For a developer wishing to make a planning application, the local transport and highway authority normally requires a Travel Plan, Sustainable Travel Plan or 'Green Travel Plan' – this subject is covered in the next section but broadly it is the means by which workers, visitors etc can be encouraged to use sustainable transport systems to reach the site.
Transport Assessments and Traffic Impact Assessments quantify the travel by visitors workers etc on the road and public transport systems in the locality of the development and identify any problems that need to be dealt with on entry and exit to the site and on the transport networks outside the development. This can include road junctions, footpaths, pedestrian crossings, cycle and bus routes, rail stations etc.
The Local Planning Authority ('District Council' outside the conurbations and some other major cities) is ostensibly the authority that a developer makes an planning application; the Highway and Transport Authority could include a 'higher' level authority such as a County Council, Transport for London or the central government Department for Transport - especially if the development is close to a major road. These other organisations need to be satisfied of the effects on the local area and the transport systems before the District authority can give planning permission.
JEC has an in depth understanding of Transport Assessments, Transport Appraisals and Traffic Impact Assessments both as a promoter and an assessor of development and infrastructure schemes. Furthermore as part of John Elliott's voluntary duties he still has a continuing role with senior people in local and central government in developing techniques and methods for carrying out these activities and influencing policy. This background and skills available to any prospective client should ensure that any development is refined to provide the best solution for the developer and obtains the necessary approvals.
Website: www.tfl.gov.ukInstitution of Highways and Transportation
Website: www.ciht.org.ukTransport Research Knowledge Centre
Website: www.transport-research.info/webThe Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE)