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Transport & Aviation
The transport system plays an essential part in everyday life. When it works well, transport supports the economy, enhances the environment, contributes to sustainable communities and encourages healthier and active lifestyles. To meet the needs of people now and in the future, the transport system must support and assist economic development and growth and enable safe sustainable travel. In a large, deeply rural county like Devon, transport underpins the economy and the way people can live and work in a way that is fundamental.
The Transport Act of 2008, as amended by the Local Transport Act 2008, placed a statutory duty on all local transport authorities outside London to produce a Local Transport Plan (LTP). In Devon the Devon & Torbay LTP3 (January 2011) replaces the old LTPs 1 & 2 and is a 15 year plan stretching out from 2011-2026. It is clearly a very important document, which will have far reaching consequences for rural Devon
CPRE Devon has found it very difficult to make much of an impact on this latest LTP, which we feel has not focussed enough on the clear possibilities to improve local rail networks and other local transport measures. The present economic climate is forcing many authorities to cut back on local bus and other services, all of which will tend to isolate rural communities or require those seeking work to make their own transport arrangements.
The Government in the Autumn Statement announced that the South Devon Link Road (Kingskerswell Bypass) would, in spite of all objections, be given approval for a start in 2012 as part of the “drive for growth”. The late John Hartley, together with others, had fought long and hard against this application as you can see from the excellent report produced for CPRE Devon by Jenny Raggett. It will remain on this website as a very good example of its kind.”
The CPRE Planning & Advisory group (PAG) will be much involved with the way in which our local rural transport infrastructure develops over the next year or so.
The closure of Plymouth Airport, the expansion of some of our sea links to the continent and the hoped for development of both rail and bus links throughout Devon will need much pressure if we are not to see many isolated communities becoming less and less sustainable. In addition, the drive for yet more large Waste Management Facilities, renewable energy proposals and the burgeoning tourist industry will hugely increase the pressure on our inadequate road and rail system.
There is a clear need for a comprehensive study of "Rural Transport in Devon" which would need to look not only at road and rail transport but also at air and sea travel. The closure of many rural bus routes and Plymouth Airport will have profound effects on the way people can work and live in and around Devon. Once produced, this report will feature on this website.