The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) this month advised local authorities and planners to prioritise cyclists, pedestrians and public transport use when building or upgrading roads to encourage higher levels of physical activity.
Guidelines encourage safe, convenient and inclusive access for all, with measures also addressing those with limited mobility.
Xavier Brice of Sustrans, the walking and cycling charity said:
“We welcome the proposal from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), which puts the needs of our most vulnerable road users first. For too long roads in our towns and cities have been dominated by cars. A shift to people-prioritised streets will not only encourage more of the public to travel actively but also help to create safer environments for everyone to move around in.
“Involving local authorities and residents in the redesign of their neighbourhoods and streets is essential; it ensures a good design that targets the issues people experience locally every day, and we have seen positive uptake in active travel through this approach. However, more needs to be done across the UK to enable more people to choose walking and cycling as their primary mode of transport for local journeys.
“Cycling and walking for more journeys is part of the solution to many of the challenges we face, including road congestion, air pollution and high levels of inactivity. This proposal demonstrates how – with some practical design solutions – we can address these challenges, while also protecting people who cycle and walk.”