Plans to improve walking and cycling

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Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans (LCWIPS)

What are LCWIPs?

Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans (LCWIPs) are ten-year plans for investing in walking and cycling within a defined area (such as a town, district or borough). LCWIPs are the best practice approach nationally for planning walking and cycling improvements, and our process follows Department for Transport guidance on developing an LCWIP (GOV.UK).

We are working to develop an LCWIP for every district and borough, to cover the whole county, by the end of 2024. LCWIPs are updating and replacing the county's former Cycling Plans.

Each LCWIP will identify where we want to prioritise investment in order to create a walking and cycling network for each district and borough. LCWIPs also set out some initial options for what could be implemented in each location, to be explored further at a later phase. Improvement works at each location will be taken forward once funding for each becomes available, and only once proposals have undergone more detailed, site-specific technical studies and there has been a full public consultation on the proposed changes.

The main objectives of each LCWIP are:

  • To increase the number of people who walk and cycle their everyday, local journeys, such as going to work, school or to visit friends, in the area covered by the LCWIP
  • To make walking and cycling safe, enjoyable, easy and convenient ways of getting around for people of all ages, abilities and confidence levels
  • To widen the county's existing cycle network, establishing a more joined up walking and cycling network for the whole county
  • To improve accessibility for everyone to key destinations such as schools, shops, hospitals and workplaces
  • To improve walking and cycling connections to key transport hubs, such as rail and bus stations, to enable longer journeys to be made using sustainable modes of travel
  • To improve walking and cycling connections to major employment hubs, such as Gatwick Airport and Heathrow Airport, to enable more people to walk and cycle to work
  • To support the delivery of the county's Local Transport Plan and our policies for active travel and personal mobility

Current plans

We are actively working with community partners to develop LCWIPs for more areas. Details on how you can have your say are below. We currently have plans in place for:

Areas where LCWIPs are currently being developed are:

  • Farnham Town
  • Mole Valley District
  • Surrey Heath Borough
  • Guildford Borough

Our aim is to have an LCWIP in place for every district and borough by the end of 2024.

What do we want to achieve?

We want walking and cycling to be the natural choice for short trips to local shops and services such as schools, with walking and cycling available to everyone as low cost, enjoyable, safe, healthy and pollution-free ways to get about. We also want walking and cycling to be convenient ways to get to bus stops and railway stations so that longer journeys across the county and beyond can be made without the need for a car.

We recognise that walking and cycling are often not as easy or pleasant as they could be and as a result many of these short trips are currently undertaken by car instead, adding to congestion and damaging our climate. Through the LCWIPs, we plan to invest in changing this to make walking and cycling great ways to get about for more of the trips that you want to make.

Our walking and cycling improvements will also make it easier to wheel and scoot, to use a mobility aid and to travel with small children or luggage, ensuring that nobody is left behind and everyone has the option to use sustainable modes of transport.

Our Local Transport Plan sets out our commitment to transforming the county's transport networks in order to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050, in line with the national target and our Climate Change Delivery Plan. 46% of Surrey's carbon emissions come from transport.

Walking and cycling are the least polluting ways of getting about and are a key part of our plans to reduce carbon emissions from transport by reducing the number of car kilometres travelled. LCWIPs will help to achieve this by supporting the delivery of our Local Transport Plan policies for planning for place and active travel and personal mobility.

Our Local Transport Plan also aims to support sustainable growth and create well-connected communities with clean air and excellent quality of life. The Community Vision for Surrey in 2030 sets out our ambition for clean, safe and green communities, where everyone's journeys are easier, our infrastructure supports sustainable growth, and everyone is able to live happy, healthy, active and fulfilling lives.

Through the LCWIPs we can plan investment in local places such as high streets to improve the experience of using public spaces and create welcoming, enjoyable places where people want to spend time outdoors and in local businesses.

What walking and cycling improvements are we seeking to make?

The LCWIPs have been developed in line with national guidance for designing walking and cycling infrastructure, including the latest standards and best practice set out in Cycle infrastructure design, the government's guide for designing cycling infrastructure. Each LCWIP is focussed on delivering six key design elements:

  • Safety. Not only must cycle infrastructure be safe, but it should also feel safe so that people of all ages, abilities and confidence levels feel able to cycle.
  • Directness. Directness is measured in both distance and time, so walking and cycling routes should provide the shortest and fastest ways of travelling from place to place, making walking and cycling easy and avoiding unnecessary delays.
  • Comfort. To make walking and cycling comfortable ways of travelling, routes must have good quality, well-maintained, smooth surfaces, adequate width for the number of users, minimal stopping and starting, and must avoid steep gradients, excessive or uneven slopes and sharp bends. The need to interact with high speed or high volumes of motor traffic also decreases comfort by increasing the level of stress and mental effort required to walk and cycle. Walking and cycling should be as easy as possible foe people of all ages, abilities and confidence levels.
  • Coherence. Walking and cycling networks should be planned and designed so that people of all ages, abilities and confidence levels can reach their day-to-day destinations easily, along routes that connect, are simple to follow and are of a consistently high quality. If sections of routes are of low-quality, otherwise adequate routes can become unusable by many potential users. Sections of a route that do not meet accessibility standards, such as having steps over a bridge on a cycle route, can also make a whole journey inaccessible for some people, and does not represent a coherent route.
  • Attractiveness. When we walk and cycle, we are more exposed to the environment that we are moving through than when we travel by car. People often value attractive walking and cycling routes with well-designed streets and public spaces, such as parks. Equally, people will avoid routes that cause concerns for their personal safety, such as routes with poor lighting or fast and dangerous traffic. The attractiveness of a route can therefore affect whether people choose to make a journey by walking and cycling.
  • Adaptability. Walking and cycling improvements should be developed to accommodate all types of users and the potential increases in the number of people walking and cycling. They should be designed to be used by as many people as possible, regardless of age, gender and disability. The design should keep the diversity and uniqueness of each individual in mind. For example, when designing cycle routes, all bicycle dimensions and sizes should be considered, including trikes, handcycles and cargo bikes.

We want to create safe, attractive, high-quality walking and cycling networks that directly serve the journeys that people want to make. By implementing these key design elements we can create networks that can be used by people of all ages, abilities and confidence levels, allowing everyone to walk and cycle.

Liveable Neighbourhoods

Whilst LCWIPs focus on strategic network connections and aim to create wider walking and cycling networks for the county, we also recognise the importance of local neighbourhood and street level interventions in connecting people wishing to walk and cycle to the wider LCWIP network.

Through our Local Transport Plan policies for planning for place we are developing a programme of Liveable Neighbourhoods for the county. Liveable Neighbourhoods are residential areas and streets that recognise their importance as places for people, and not just their role in the movement of motor vehicles.

Key characteristics of Liveable Neighbourhoods include: increasing the comfort, safety and accessibility of walking and cycling; creating space for community facilities like parks, gardens, play spaces and seating; creating attractive local environments and welcoming neighbourhoods that people want to live in; reducing the dominance of cars and goods vehicles on residential roads to improve road safety, air and noise quality, and to enable more walking, cycling and social interactions.

Liveable Neighbourhoods will connect people to the wider LCWIP networks by making walking and cycling on local residential streets safe, easy, comfortable and accessible for people of all abilities, ages and confidence levels. Liveable Neighbourhood schemes will be designed and implemented alongside the LCWIPs.

Rights of Way

We will also continue to invest in our Rights of Way network, which offers trails to explore the county as well as inter-urban links. See our Rights of Way Improvement Plan.

Supporting facilities

These investments will be complimented by the provision of supporting facilities, such as improved signposting, seating, secure cycle parking and charging facilities for e-bikes and e-cargo bikes. Supporting facilities can make cycling easier, more accessible and more attractive. We will provide supporting facilities in residential areas and at key destinations including shops, hospitals and schools.

Our Local Transport Plan policies for planning for place and active travel and personal mobility provide further information on our other policies to improve walking and cycling across the county.

Delivering the improvements

We are currently delivering improvements to walking and cycling facilities through the government's Active Travel Fund for roads and pavements and several of our major transport projects. In addition, we also regularly undertake localised highway improvements.

Other improvements that have been identified in completed LCWIPs will be taken forward in future projects, subject to funding and feasibility.

Have your say

We want to hear from you.

We want every LCWIP to reflect the journeys that people want to make, so we start each LCWIP by reviewing public suggestions for where improvements should be made. You can tell us about missing local facilities that make it difficult to walk or cycle in your area, roads that you find dangerous or off-putting for walking and cycling, and improvements that you would like to see using our interactive map. (To report a maintenance fault with existing facilities, for example a pothole, you should instead report this through our tell us about a highway issue page.)

After each LCWIP is published, we will develop each recommended route or area improvement within them further with technical studies and interim designs. This will all then be subject to a public consultation, which will be a second opportunity to have your say. Feedback from the consultation will be used to inform the final design of the works as well as a final decision on implementing the improvements.

All current road and transport proposals and consultations in Surrey are available on our website.

You can also sign up to receive future email updates for consultations on LCWIP routes by visiting the project news page of the interactive walking and cycling suggestions map.

If you are commenting on the interactive map, please note that we are unable to respond to individual walking and cycling suggestions but will consider all feedback received. We are aware that several national walking and cycling campaign groups have similar maps of suggestions contributed by members of the public, and we will also look at these as part of the LCWIP process.

We plan to regularly review the interactive suggestions map. This means that even if an LCWIP for your area has already been produced, or is not yet underway, we want to continue to receive your ideas and will consider them when we next review plans for the area or as part of other workstreams such as Liveable Neighbourhoods.

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