Future transport thinking

Surrey's transport system is large and complex and has a significant impact on key issues such as climate change and health and wellbeing. For example, we know that 40% of carbon emissions are generated by transport, which in turn affects air quality.

It is crucial that communities and partner organisations work together to understand and tackle the challenges we're facing, and to understand the contributions we can all make to ensure our transport system is sustainable.

This page outlines emerging programmes of work that begin to consider how we might approach making improvements to the transport system in future.

Rethinking Transport

The Rethinking Transport programme has been set up to understand our current transport challenges, and look at how we can change our relationship with transport and travel by imagining the kind of transport system we want in future.

We want people to be able to access key aspects of day-to-day life more easily and sustainably, such as their communities, employment, health and social care, education and leisure activities. This means making available modes of transport that don't have a detrimental effect on health and wellbeing or climate change. We also want people to be able to avoid unnecessary or unwanted journeys where possible, which would help to take journeys off the road and reduce congestion.

Rethinking Transport forms part of the council's transformation programme and will contribute to achieving the ambitions of Surrey's 2030 Community Vision and our Health and Wellbeing Strategy.

What have we done so far?

Work began on the Rethinking Transport programme in April 2019 and it is expected to last two years in total.

The programme started with a discovery phase, which was run in conjunction with IMPOWER, who helped us to understand current transport and travel provision in Surrey, and to develop long-term innovative solutions.

The discovery phase was completed in July 2019 and details are outlined in the Discovery Phase Report - Executive Summary (PDF). It identified 3 core ambitions for Rethinking Transport:

  • Take journeys off the road
  • Improve air quality
  • Increase independence via access to sustainable modes of transport

The report found that residents are highly dependent on driving and that public transport use has not significantly changed over the last few years.

Since August 2019 the council has been working with its partners to respond to the recommendations made by IMPOWER as outlined in the Rethinking Transport Programme Summary (PDF). We are collectively defining Surrey's shared ambition for the future of transport and looking at practical ways to achieve that ambition. This includes developing pilot projects to test concepts and improve the way we work with each other and our communities and understand if these approaches would work on a broader basis in the future.

What is next for Rethinking Transport?

From January 2020 onwards we will be finalising plans for a number of pilot projects in areas across the county, with a view to delivering them later in the year. Pilot projects currently in development include:

  • Enabling public and private sector organisations to encourage their employees to travel more sustainably
  • Addressing congestion and access issues around Frimley Park Hospital and the surrounding area
  • Increasing independent travel options for adults with additional needs in Elmbridge

Work is underway to respond to the full set of recommendations made in the discovery phase report, and regular updates will be provided to share progress.

Files available to download