Why are Travel Plans needed for Planning Permission?

Are you a developer applying to the local authority for permission to build a new development?

Whether your development is for new homes or a new office block, the Local Planning Authority are unlikely to validate your application until you have submitted a Travel Plan.

Electric Vehicle Charging

What is a Travel Plan?

Government guidance states that, Travel Plans are long-term management strategies for integrating sustainable travel into the planning process.  Based on evidence of the anticipated transport impacts of a development, measures to promote and encourage sustainable travel such as walking and cycling need to be included and targets set to achieve a shift away from the use of the motorcar.

Interestingly, the guidance states the Travel Plan should not, however, be used “as an excuse for unfairly penalising drivers and cutting provision for cars in a way that is unsustainable and could have negative impacts on the surrounding streets.”

You can find the full guidance here.

And why are they needed for Planning?

Since their mandatory implementation in April 2008, Standard Planning Application Forms have been used by Local Planning Authorities and as part of the standardisation, Travel Plans have become a minimum requirement in order planning applications to be validated. 

The main reason is the need to reduce reliance on the motorcar and shift towards more sustainable methods of travelling in order to reduce carbon emissions and ultimately prevent global warming.

Sustainable Travel

How can we help?

Creating a Travel Plan involves the development of a set of mechanisms, initiatives and targets that can enable an organisation to reduce the impact of travel and transport on the environment, particularly the use of fossil fuelled cars.  It is a process that will grow and develop with time and reflect the changing circumstances of an organisation and its environment.

Measures to encourage 'greener travel' may include providing EV chargers as part of your residential development to encourage residents towards owning an electric car, or simply providing free umbrellas in reception for staff to use to walk home in the UK's typical wet weather. 

The Traffic & Transportation team at Encon Associates are able to compile the necessary document to meet Local Authority requirements to ensure your application is not only initially validated, but ultimately achieves planning permission.

Please contact us to speak to a member of the team to discuss your project and how we can help.

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