Advocacy papers

Title: A country in a jam: tackling congestion in our towns and cities

Organisation: Local Government Association (LGA)
Date uploaded: 5th September 2017
Date published/launched: August 2017

This report identifies congestion as a serious problem for economic development, quality of life and public health. It also identifies the steps that some councils have taken to reduce congestion and its impact.

The report shows that speeds on local roads across the country continue to decrease, with the average speed on ‘A’ roads now 25.2mph - a year-on-year fall of 1%.

The report also suggests that the average motorist spends 4.9 days each year stuck in traffic on major roads.

It highlights how congestion ‘significantly contributes to excess harmful vehicle emissions’ - which lead to 40,000 premature deaths annually.

The report also features steps that the Government could take to work with councils to ensure that traffic growth is better managed, congestion is reduced and air quality problems are tackled.

These methods include long term funding certainty for local authorities such as that enjoyed by Highways England and Network Rail, and flexibility from Highways England on using its resources on the local network to improve the strategic network.

It also calls for an end to competitive bidding for local transport funds, with complete discretion given to authorities to make the best decision based on local need - and the resources and powers necessary to improve air quality.

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