Challenges for Europe and North America
Edited by Karst T. Geurs, Kevin J. Krizek and Aura Reggiani
Chapter 14: Integrating transport in the UK through accessibility planning
Integrated transport is an often talked-about, but ill-defined goal. Some joint delivery has been achieved between transport modes, but attempts to integrate transport delivery with broader social, environmental and economic programmes have lacked a practical toolkit. Accessibility planning is a toolkit of growing importance. It identifies the people, business and agencies with the capability to meet accessibility needs, and a process for managing joint working to clarify mechanisms and accountability for delivery. This could be a bus or rail operator adding linked services to serve people’s needs for access to the transport system, but more often accessibility planning is used to manage integrated improvements for access to health, work, education, shopping and leisure. Although accessibility planning had been suggested within the academic literature since the 1950s, it was the emergence of the sustainable development debate that provided the initial momentum for the emergence of current United Kingdom (UK) practice (ECOTEC, 1993). Experience from the last 20 years demonstrates the potential of the approach, but practice still needs to be significantly improved. The detailed lessons from UK practice are reported elsewhere (Halden, 2009). The purpose of this chapter is to offer a broad review of the lessons from practice, and to indicate possible future directions. This chapter explains UK accessibility planning and its history, before discussing the use of the approach in practice. As accessibility planning has become embedded in UK practice, there has been a policy debate about the added value to transport planning. The chapter reviews the differing perspectives and suggests how these can be reconciled.
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