University of Essex Transport Policy Sub-Committee (TPSC) Update Introduction

Transport Policy Sub-Committee
26 July 2010
Agenda item 10
University of Essex Transport Policy Sub-Committee (TPSC) Update
(March – July 2010)
The Travel Plan Club (TPC) continues to be very busy with lots of projects underway. We have had
several new associate members join us and the push has now begun to attract many more through the
NQE business awards. Individual Travel Plan Club members have lots going on with their Travel Plans
which we are assisting them with and we have a central marking campaign to pursue. We are working
more closely with the 2020Transport Sub Group to develop the Transport action plan and ensure we input
into current and future consultation on Colchester transport infrastructure projects.
The TPC has assisted Charlotte at a number of promotional events, namely the Town to Gown walk
during Walk to Work week in April, promoting cycling at an event at the Uni that took place during the
Cycle Challenge, providing and manning the pedal powered smoothie making machine during Bike Week
and helping out with the Cycle Census.
The TPC’s first Walk to Work week took place 26th – 30th April 2010. Two walking maps, one
based on North Colchester, and the other based on East Colchester (which includes the Uni) were
designed and launched during Walk to Work week. A full week of events was organised centrally
including a Map Grab, Step’n Snap competition, Hiking Hardy talk, Town to Gown walk, Foot
Feast, and Walk to Work Wednesday, which were all meant to also encourage participation in
Living Streets’ Walking Works online challenge. A walking blogspot and facebook page was also
promoted and attracted a lot of interest.
Overall we were pleased with the level of awareness that was raised and publicity generated. Our
plans were let down slightly by technical hitches on the Walking Works challenge which made it
difficult for people to participate and log their walking miles. The events were reasonably well
attended and the Uni’s Town to Gown walk was very successful.
We now plan a second Walk to Work campaign in October to coincide with International Walk to
School month. This will focus more on combining the trip to school and work, a Step ‘n’ Snap
competition and organisational based events rather than central events.
The links with the Walk Colchester project headed up by Rowena Macaulay from the University of
Essex, continue to develop.
Public Transport
National Express East Anglia (NXEA)
The Travel Plan Club submitted a response to the Greater Anglia Rail franchise consultation to DfT on
behalf of Colchester2020. However since the change of government the franchise tender has been
cancelled while the government reviews franchise conditions as part of achieving better value for money.
We understand that the Greater Anglia franchise will now be tendered in late 2010 once the new franchise
process is established. In the meantime National Express will continue to run the service.
The Station Travel Plan pilot continues, with new cycle parking being installed on the north side. This
will include a two tier rack to store more bikes in the area and a secure compound which will be marketed
particularly to season ticket holders.
A new leaflet about cycling to the station is near completion.
Transport Policy Sub-Committee
26 July 2010
Agenda item 10
There has been little take up across TPC members of the 10% rail discount. Promoting this scheme is a
focus in the coming months.
Bus Services
Bus unreliability continues to be a problem. It is anticipated that until some of the longer term
infrastructure changes have been implemented this situation will not improve greatly. We understand
ECC has been in communication with Network Rail about the signalling at Eastgates that causes big
delays to road users, and we raised it in our response to the rail franchise consultation.
Although we are not strongly promoting bus travel at the moment, we have decided that as part of our
marketing plan we will update our Commuters Bus leaflet and will relaunch it in September along with
promoting all the bus discounts available amongst the different TPC member organisations. This is
principally aimed at students at the Uni and Colchester Institute during freshers week, as they are the most
likeliest potential bus users.
Car sharing
See supplementary report.
Business Travel
ECC have provided more information to TPC members regarding how they implemented their successful
Business Travel policy and decision tree. Part of this is using a local company through which to purchase
train tickets. This has offered significant cost savings, time savings and a much easier system for staff to
obtain train tickets replacing outdated train warrants. This has meant far more staff now travel on business
by train. They can also organise conferences, international travel and hotel accommodation. The company
itself, will be presenting to the TPC in September.
New cycle maps are now available for Highwoods, Greenstead, Garrison as well as the Town Centre.
Personal Travel Planning projects have also been undertaken in all areas bar the Town Centre, and we
understand they have been very successful.
The big cycling event in the past months has been the Colchester Cycle Challenge, where 54
organisations and 876 people took part. As you will be aware the Uni won the challenge clocking up a
fantastic 6369 miles over the two weeks with a 5.9% participation rate.
All TPC members participated and the TPC particularly focused on engaging businesses at North
Colchester Business Parks through a number of promotional events.
Other Travel Plan Club work
Colchester2020 Travel Plan Club survey.
The two yearly survey started in late June and is open until the 23rd July. Preliminary results may be
available for the TPSC meeting. New survey software was used offering the opportunity to design a more
interactive survey. The results will be compared to the 2008 survey results. We also hope to gain some
useful information for future marketing and for looking at business travel.
Expanding the Travel Plan Club
The associate membership package has been established and small and medium sized organisations are
now being encouraged to join. The Travel Plan section of the 2020 website has been revamped, a
facebook page set up and a flyer designed. Membership of the TPC has been promoted at the recent
Colchester2020 events in Castle Park.
Transport Policy Sub-Committee
26 July 2010
Agenda item 10
The main route through which membership of the TPC is being promoted this year is via the NQE
Business Awards. We are jointly sponsoring a new category Active Travel and Staff Wellbeing with
Essex County Council (who are also promoting their accreditation scheme) and NHS North East Essex
who are also promoting their Health Trainer and Wellbeing programmes). The aim is to attract small and
medium sized organisations who are committed to sustainable transport and the wellbeing of staff but
who do not have a formal travel plan. Travel Plan Club members are also welcome to enter and we hope
to get finalists in three categories, small, medium and large, with those with more established Travel
Plans being reflected in the ‘large’ category. We will get lots of publicity through this event via the
newspaper, contacts with the other sponsors, organisations invited to enter and the awards ceremony. We
also have one page of publicity in the Gazette to be used over the next year.
ECC Travel Plan accreditation
The majority of Travel Plan Club members are applying for ECC accreditation for their Travel Plans and
have been collecting evidence for review. Achievement of accreditation to Bronze, Silver or Gold will be
announced at the end of July. Up to £2k grants will be available for those organisations achieving
accreditation, which can be spent on Travel Plan related facilities or marketing.
TPC marketing plan for the rest of the year
We have agreed a central marketing plan for the Travel Plan Club for the rest of the year. We will
organise promotional messages/marketing material etc centrally then offer support for any additional
specific organisational activities Travel Plan Members want to undertake. The Mosaic market
segmentation tool will increasingly be used to help us identify our target audience and develop our
marketing messages.
What some of the other Travel Plan Club members are up to
We are helping CHUFT with a major review of their Travel Plan as part of a planning agreement and due
to current pressure on car parking. Similar to the University, they are considering eligibility criteria for
parking and exclusion zones to restrict the numbers of staff who can park on site.
Colchester Institute are significantly expanding their dedicated car share bays following the success to
date of their car share scheme, lunch time postcode events have been oganised for September to promote
the new bays. Their car park retender is near conclusion. Sustainable transport will be promoted at the
freshers fair and a meeting is planned with the Student Union to discuss the best way to engage with
students throughout the year.
CBC increased it’s car park charges to £1 a day in April. Through their steering group a number of
projects are in the pipe line including a pilot car pool scheme, improvements to cycle facilities and
promotion of car sharing.
We are working with AECOM and the Highways Agency on plans for ECC and the TPC to take over the
project when AECOM’s contract ends next year. We are beginning to take a more active role in the
project starting with the events promoting the Cycle Challenge which helped us build up new contacts.
We are now planning a number of events in September around Smarter Driving, car sharing and bus
travel to attract more organisations and individuals to get involved in the project.
Colchester2020 Transport Commitment
Following the meeting back in March where the Colchester2020 Transport sub group received updates on
key projects, 3 key areas to concentrate on were identified:
Habit change – through working with Colchester2020 Travel Plan Club, Cycle Colchester,
Station travel plan, Walk Colchester etc
Engagement with businesses and the broader community – particularly in terms of park and
ride and Better Town Centre
Transport Policy Sub-Committee
26 July 2010
Agenda item 10
Influencing transport infrastructure and policy – to ensure response is provided to
The Colchester2020 Transport event in June was used to update the public on the key projects. The
Transport Sub Group is due to meet during July to further progress the ideas into an action plan.
The TPC gave an update on it’s work at the May Colchester2020 partners meeting.
Feedback is welcomed from TPSC, and TPSC is requested to endorse the work of the Travel Plan
Emily Harrup & Andrew Budd
Colchester2020 Travel Plan Coordinator team
Transport Policy Sub-Committee
26 July 2010
Agenda item 10
2010 Marketing focus
Specific event dates
Central TPC promotions across all members
Promote train discount by email
Promote cycle to work scheme by email
Information month - Promote all Travel Plan measures
Bikeabilty Training
Survey analysis
16th – 22nd September European
Mobility Week
18th – 23rd October
Walk to Work week and school’s
walk to school month
Re-launch Commuter Bus map and bus promotion
Bikeability Training
Walk to work week, link with schools, Step’n Snap
Bikeabilty training – focus on night riding
31st October – 6th November
NQE business awards site visits
Colchester2020 car share week
Bikeabilty training – focus on night riding
NQE Business Awards
Smarter driving event/promotion with Energy Savings
New Years Resolution campaign