Local Transport Plan - Frequently asked questions
Frequently asked questions about the Local Transport Plan.
- Q: What are Local Transport Plans?
- Q: Who produces them and what are the arrangements for producing the current plan?
- Q: Why have you produced a new LTP now when there are all these cut backs being made?
- Q: What are the Government's priorities for the Local Transport Plan (LTP)?
- Q: What are Bournemouth, Poole and Dorset's priorities for the Local Transport Plan?
- Q: How does this plan link to the South East Dorset Transport Study?
- Q: What does the Local Transport Plan say about the rest of Dorset?
- Q: Where does the money come from for all these improvements?
- Q: If there is only limited money how can we choose between different schemes?
- Q: Are the local councils responsible for all transport improvements?
- Q: How is this Local Transport Plan different from previous plans?
- Q: How will we measure success?
Q: What are Local Transport Plans?
A: Local Transport Plans (or LTPs) are comprehensive plans which look at the transport needs of the area and set out a way forward to deliver those needs through short, medium and long term transport solutions. They set out how transport can improve our safety and health, support out local economy, protect our environment and reduce carbon emissions and pollution. They are also how funding for maintenance and improvements are secured from central government. LTPs can consider improvements to all major forms of transport whether under the control of local councils or not.
Q: Who produces them and what are the arrangements for producing the current plan?
A: They are produced by local councils responsible for roads and transport; in this area, Bournemouth Borough Council, the Borough of Poole and Dorset County Council. The councils are currently working together to produce one plan for the whole Dorset area.
Q: Why have you produced a new LTP now when there are all these cut backs being made?
A: Local Transport Plans are a statutory requirement, that is, they are a requirement of Central Government.
Q: What are the Government's priorities for the Local Transport Plan (LTP)?
A: The priorities for the coalition government are for LTPs to support economic competitiveness and growth, by delivering reliable and efficient transport networks, and to reduce transport's emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases through reducing the dependency on cars. This will be achieved through a range of measures but will include encouraging people to switch to public transport, cycling or walking when practical.
Q: What are Bournemouth, Poole and Dorset's priorities for the Local Transport Plan?
A: As well as supporting the government's twin goals for economic growth and climate change. The councils' also want to continue to reduce the levels of casualties on our roads, improve public health by promoting active and sustainable forms of travel such as cycling and walking, ensuring good access to essential services and maintaining and enhancing the qualities that make Dorset such an attractive place to live and visit. It is also important for the LTP to support plans for new housing and other development. We have sought the views of local people and found broad support for all these objectives.
Q: How does this plan link to the South East Dorset Transport Study?
A: The South East Dorset Transport Study has provided a vast amount of technical evidence and related information on how to improve our current transport network and this work underpins many of the proposals contained in the LTP.
Q: What does the Local Transport Plan say about the rest of Dorset?
A: The LTP is for the whole of Dorset and so we have also gathered information about transport issues and needs from a number of sources. In particular we have worked closely with the Borough and District Councils as they prepare their Local Development Frameworks and identified, where appropriate, transport improvements that will assist in bringing forward the proposals contained in those plans.
Q: Where does the money come from for all these improvements?
A: Most finance for improvements comes directly or indirectly from Central Government, with some additional funds from the local councils themselves. New development is expected to contribute towards the costs of reducing the impacts they have on transport networks. Other means of funding especially new funding streams from Central Government will be explored.
Q: If there is only limited money how can we choose between different schemes?
A: First and foremost schemes must be affordable, give good value for money and be deliverable. There is, for example, no point in identifying road schemes that cannot be delivered due to the environmental designations of the land through which they would pass. This is a particular issue for Dorset. Similarly schemes have to have broad support from the public and local politicians. In preparing the plan we have already undertaken considerable consultation to get the views of local people on possible alternatives. It is particularly important that any improvements need to address the goals laid down in the plan and there are various technical means of achieving this. Having a clear and concise basis for what we want to achieve, helps the councils prioritise expenditure on improvements.
Q: Are the local councils responsible for all transport improvements?
A: No. They do however have responsibility for the maintenance and improvements of most public roads, apart from the A31/A35 trunk road which is the responsibility of the Highways Agency. It is vital that the local councils work in partnership with the Highways Agency, local bus operators, rail companies and other organisations in bringing forward the proposals contained in the LTP.
Q: How is this Local Transport Plan different from previous plans?
A: Previous LTP's were split geographically; one for the South East Dorset conurbation and one for the rest of Dorset. One plan for the whole of Dorset rather than two is easier for people to understand and helps to promote more joint working between the councils, which can be cost-effective. It also provides a better focus on the larger issues that cross authority boundaries and require a joined up response or solution. The LTP is more fully integrated with the wider planning process and is better at identifying the requirements to enable growth to occur. There are stronger links with promoting the economy, especially tourism and a stronger focus on green issues and promoting low carbon travel. Less money means less ability to address problems, but a stronger focus on self help and value for money.
Q: How will we measure success?
A: In the previous LTP, the Government had requested that targets are set for various aspects of the plan. Indeed the financing of improvements contained in the plan has in part been dependant on achieving those targets. The new government is not quite so prescriptive about the setting of targets but there is some merit in monitoring the impact of the plan. We need to understand whether or not we are achieving our main goals. Indicators of success, which will be contained in the implementation plan include; reductions in the number of casualties on our roads; increases in the number of passengers on our buses or the levels of observed congestion or delays. Monitoring will also show us what measures are more successful and help us to deliver value for money in the schemes we deliver.