Mayor of London reveals his transport plans for the next 25 years

The mayor of London has revealed his revised transport strategy which commits to ploughing ahead with Crossrail 2 and tube line extensions while reaffirming his commitment for 80% of journeys to be made by walking, cycling and public transport by 2041.

Included in the plans for the next 25 years is also a West London Orbital rail line that would connect Hounslow with Cricklewood and Hendon, with Sadiq Khan claiming it could potentially support the delivery of another 20,000 homes. He has also pledged "record-breaking investment" across the entire tube network which would finance the extension of both the Northern and Bakerloo lines.

The mayor published a draft of his strategy for consultation last June and the revised document has now been presented to the London Assembly for consideration before final publication in the coming weeks.

A total of 6,600 responses were received on last year's consultation and there has been a number of amendments following the feedback received. These include a commitment to work with the London boroughs of Merton and Sutton to develop the proposed Sutton Tram extension and an increased focus on the opportunities from new technology. 

The mayor of London added: “I’ve been clear that we need to be bold in how our city operates as London’s population grows, and this means not only investing record amounts in new infrastructure like extensions to the tube, rail and Crossrail 2, but working with boroughs and local communities to reduce our reliance on car use across London. With our unprecedented focus on walking, cycling and clean public transport, our ambitious transport strategy can act as a crucial driver for new homes and jobs, but also improve quality of life for everyone living in London.”

An instrumental part of the mayor’s focus to become greener is a pledge of billions to be invested in delivering the Healthy Streets Approach across all London boroughs. This investment according to the strategy will “help remove the need to travel by car, and make walking, cycling and taking public transport safer and easier, helping to promote healthier active lifestyles”. The money will go towards projects like the transformation schemes at Oxford Street and Old Street in central London.

Commenting on the strategy, Transport for London’s commissioner Mike Brown, said: “Transport is vital to the success of a city. The capital’s population is expected to rise to 10.8m people by 2041, creating six million additional journeys every day. This bold strategy sets out how London can prosper as it grows over the next two decades, supported by huge improvements to the transport system and the mayor’s vision for active, affordable, efficient and sustainable transport.”

However, the revised strategy has been criticised for a “lack of detail” by Keith Prince, Conservative London Assembly member and the chair of its transport committee. "As a Committee we have been crying out for some real detail in the mayor’s transport strategy and sadly, there’s nothing new in today’s revised document,” he said. “The target for 80% of journeys to be undertaken by walking, cycling or public transport by 2041 is all well and good, but we called for the overall target to be broken down by mode,” said Prince.

Responding to the mayor of London’s transport strategy, chief executive of the Association for Consultancy and Engineering (ACE), Nelson Ogunshakin, has commended the mayor and his team for the 25-year plan, while urging other important transport bodies around the country like Transport for the North and Transport for Wales to adopt a similar long-term approach to infrastructure planning.

“Successful infrastructure demands careful long-term planning, so Sadiq Khan should be commended for London’s responsible transport strategy which, for possibly the first time, looks beyond near-term mayoral politics to offer a bold vision for the future of transport in the capital," he added. "The mayor, and his team led by his deputy for transport, Valerie Shawcross, should also be praised for their holistic approach in engaging all stakeholders, including local communities across London, and in producing an integrated plan which firmly embeds transport as the key to building more homes, tackling our future environmental challenges and delivering healthy streets for Londoners.”

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