City unveils ambitious 25-year draft Strategy to tackle air quality, road danger and congestion in the Square Mile

For the first time in its almost 1000-year history, the City of London Corporation has developed a long-term Transport Strategy with bold visions and outcomes for the Square Mile’s streets and transport.

The Transport Strategy will set the framework for future investment in the Square Mile’s streets.

On a daily basis, over 500,000 workers commute into London’s business district, which spans just over one square mile.

Under these proposals, the next 25-years of transport investment in the City of London would see:

Pedestrians are the priority: Planning, infrastructure and safety changes will be developed by first prioritising the needs of people walking, while seeking to minimise any impact on essential traffic.

A congestion charge that’s fit for purpose: We aim to support and champion the next generation in road user charging for Central London as part of a range of measures to proactively seek to reduce motor traffic by 25% by 2030 and 50% by 2044.

Fewer vehicles on City streets: A street hierarchy is proposed to encourage drivers to use the right street for the right journey. Vehicles that do not have a final destination in the City will be directed away from pedestrian priority areas.

The City as UK pioneers for a zero emission future: The City of London Corporation would champion Britain’s first large scale Zero Emission Zone to cover central London and, in the interim, introduce local zero emission zones covering the Eastern City Cluster and Barbican and Golden Lane.

Vision Zero achieved at 15mph: The City saw a significant reduction in the number of people killed and seriously injured while cycling in the City following the implementation of the 20mph speed limit. However, more workers than ever on City streets has meant that the overall number of people killed and seriously injured annually has not reduced. The introduction of a City-wide 15mph speed limit, subject to approval by the Department for Transport, aims to reduce the likelihood and severity of collisions as we strive to eliminate death and serious injury from our streets.

Consolidation is key: As a global business district, deliveries make up a quarter of vehicles on City streets, raising to a third during the morning peak. The aim is to reduce this by 50% by 2030 with off-site consolidation, timed access and loading restrictions for freight vehicles. The towers at 22 Bishopsgate and 1 Undershaft will be some of Europe’s tallest office buildings on completion, with TwentyTwo expected to accommodate up to 12,000 occupiers. Both were granted planning approval on the condition that deliveries were first sent to a consolidation centre outside the City before being grouped and delivered in fewer trips throughout the day to mitigate the impact of the developments.

Commenting on the proposals, Chris Hayward, Planning & Transportation Chairman at the City of London Corporation said:

“I am delighted that the City Corporation engaged with over 2,500 people during the earlier public consultations, the findings from which shaped these proposals.

The Square Mile is a unique place to travel, therefore radical proposals are required to future-proof this world class, growing business and cultural centre.

“We know that the way that the vast majority of people get to the City is different than elsewhere across the world, with 93% of commuters arriving here by public transport, walking or cycling.

“Nine out of 10 of collisions that result in someone being killed or seriously injured in collisions involve a motor vehicle and so we need bold proposals to make our streets safer .

“Once finalised, this Transport Strategy will be transformative in ensuring that the Square Mile remains a healthy, accessible and safe commercial and cultural centre and a great place to live, work, and visit in the years to come.”

The Strategy includes further proposals which address accessibility issues for those with mobility needs, on street security, improving the cycling experience, transformative public realm principles, electric vehicle charging infrastructure and emerging technology.

The draft Strategy will be presented to the Planning and Transportation Committee for consideration on Tuesday 30 October. If approved, consultation on the Strategy and draft Delivery Plan, which outlines how the City Corporation will phase short-term deliverables over the next three years, will begin in November. The final Strategy will be submitted to City Corporation decision making bodies in Spring 2019.

Notes to editors

The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK. www.cityoflondon.gov.uk

The full set of draft proposals can be accessed here.

Please contact Jennifer.Ogunleye@cityoflondon.gov.uk, 020 7332 3946, 07710 860885 with any media enquiries.