The overall accessibility of a site is a key factor in its acceptability for new development proposals. A site should normally be accessible by all means of transport including walking, cycling, by public transport and by the private car plus access for larger vehicles such as refuge vehicles and delivery lorrys. The sustainability of a site is generally assessed in relation to its accessibility and the level of demand for all travel that a new development will generate. Should a site lack certain transport facilities then the development proposals may need to incorporate improvements and these should be proportionate to the level of travel likely to be generated by the proposals.
Larger development projects and those in sensitive locations may require an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) to be submitted with the planning application. KTC has experience of providing input to the EIA for a variety of development projects including:
KTC directors have extensive experience of presenting expert evidence at public inquiries, most often when planning permission for new development has been refused. Together, they have experience of attending formal planning appeals and informal hearings, providing evidence via written representations and of presenting evidence at an enforcement appeal, a court hearing and a conjoined compulsory purchase and stopping up inquiry.
Examples of projects involving the presentation of evidence as an expert witness include:
The satisfactory availability of public transport for new development projects is a key issue for a successful scheme and for securing planning permission.
Public transport accessibility is addressed in the majority of Transport Assessments and Transport Statements prepared for new developments.
KTC staff have undertaken public transport specific projects including public transport interchange and park and ride studies.
The closure or ‘stopping up’ of public highways is sometimes required to enable development to proceed. KTC has experience of the stopping up process which, if associated with development proposals, is normally via Section 247 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.
Following changes designed to speed up the process in 2013, an application for stopping up can be made and progressed once the planning application has been submitted rather than waiting until planning permission has been granted. Application is made to the National Transport Casework Team of the Department for Transport. Statutory undertakers with plant in the affected area of highway to be closed need to be consulted and satisfied that their plant can be satisfactorily relocated.
It is relatively common for a new development proposal to require a new Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) or changes to an existing Order, either on a temporary or permanent basis. These can include the introduction of restrictions for on-street parking in the vicinity of a development site, often related to the construction period of a scheme.
KTC staff have experience of designing and promoting TROs in liaison with local highway authorities.
Transport Assessments and Transport Statements are now required to accompany planning applications for all but the smallest developments.
The scope of a Transport Assessment can vary depending on the type of development proposed but a common theme is assessing the transport implications of a proposal by all modes of travel.
KTC staff have a wide range of experience in the design of highways and junctions required for the planning stages of a project. This encompasses the national standards set out in the Design Manual for Roads and Bridges as well guidance provided in Manual for Streets. KTC does not provide a detailed design service but our staff have good experience of such work and intrinsically understand what is achievable in practice. This assists in avoiding significant issues of deliverability and implementation arising at a later stage.
KTC are familiar with the normal suite of junction capacity analysis programs including ARCADY, PICADY, OSCADY, LINSIG and TRANSYT.
Parking is an issue to be addressed in almost every new development proposal, the number of spaces to be provided and the associated parking layout being common issues of concern. KTC staff have a wide range of experience in providing parking layout advice and in liaising with the Local Highway Authority on the acceptable level of parking.
KTC have expertise in the layout design of both surface level and multi storey car parks (MSCP)
New developments and their associated access arrangements often require new signing for all road users including pedestrians, cyclists and drivers. The appropriate signing may include changes to existing signs or the design of new signs and road markings. KTC staff are well versed in the requirements of the Traffic Signs Manual that provides national guidance for traffic authorities on the use of traffic signs and road markings.
The Cabot Circus development in Bristol is an example of a project requiring extensive changes to signing and KTC developed a scheme for strategic signing of the new development.
Most types of development require at least a degree of servicing and KTC staff have considerable experience in advising on the design of access for service vehicles. Servicing in its wider sense includes access for refuse collection vehicles, pantechnicons and emergency vehicles, as well as delivery and collection of goods and materials, much of this undertaken using heavy goods vehicles (HGVs). The designs of existing and proposed road layouts can be assessed for their ability to cater for different sizes of HGV, with layout alterations designed to suit. This is usually undertaken using the AutoTRACK program.
The concept of “shared space” reflects the remodelling of streets to reduce the speed of traffic and to shift the priority of use away from motor vehicles in favour of pedestrians and cyclists. Traffic calming measures are generally introduced as part of this broader approach.
KTC has designed a number of traffic calming schemes to include physical features, changes in priority, street dimensions and reduced visibility, as highlighted in the research undertaken for the DfT’s Manual for Streets. Such measures are often introduced as part of a new development proposal where traffic speed is considered an issue to be addressed.
KTC frequently assess the space needed for a variety of vehicles to negotiate existing or new facilities, such as access roads, junctions or service yard layouts. This is undertaken using the AutoTRACK program which is used as part of the AutoCAD suite of programs and requires some form of digital mapping.
KTC has a wide range of experience of preparing interim and full Travel Plans for a range of development types across the country and also acting as Travel Plan Co-ordinator.
KTC staff have organised, analysed and produced Reports of Travel Surveys at many land uses including schools, residential, employment and leisure, where we have worked at Stonehenge, Longleat and the Cheddar Gorge.