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Project

Local transport in the crisis

The coronavirus and subsequent lockdown have had a dramatic impact on Londoners’ travel patterns and local transport provision. This project will bring the challenges that face local authorities and Transport for London into focus, highlight the indirect consequences of the lockdown, and explore potential ‘silver lining’ transport opportunities for recovery.

The coronavirus has had a profound and wide reaching impact on London’s transport system. Tube passenger numbers dropped by 95 per cent and bus passengers by 85 per cent at the height of lockdown. Transport for London had been struggling with the financial implications of this, which led to a substantial government funding package in May to aid the recovery of the transport network.

With many Londoners feeling uneasy about travelling on public transport once restrictions are lifted, the Mayor and boroughs are looking at how the wider transport network can be adapted and improved.

This project will bring the challenges facing local authorities and Transport for London into focus, highlight the indirect consequences of the lockdown, and explore potential ‘silver lining’ transport opportunities for recovery.

It will look at:

  • The economic impact, long recovery and rapid bounce back scenarios;
  • The impact that coronavirus has on user behaviour and transport preference;
  • The direct financial impact these changes are having on local authority transport budgets, and the indirect financial impacts arising from ridership, Transport for London grant funding and Department for Transport road repair funding.
  • Insight into ‘tactical’ transport responses from around the globe, from temporary bike lanes to parking measures.

The project will include new polling looking at Londoners’ changing attitudes to transport as a result of the pandemic, and what the medium- and long-term impacts might be.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of our survey analysis on our blog.

We will also research the potential impact on businesses too, and shed light on how local authorities might need to respond, adjust their expectations of future transport flows, and their transport-related financial projections.

The project will start and close with public webinars to disseminate our findings and provoke a lively discussion of these pressing issues.

This project will be delivered over Summer 2020. For more information about the research and partnership opportunities, contact Rob Whitehead.

Major Sponsor

This project has been generously supported by