Memorandum by the City of Bradford Metropolitan
District Council (IT 109)
INTEGRATED TRANSPORT WHITE PAPER
The purpose of this letter is to expand on one
particular issue which is causing concern to Bradford Council,
in my capacity as Chair of Transportation, Planning and Design
Committee. My concern is the apparent lack of integration and
ownership between government departments on transport policy issues.
There are two pertinent recent examples which illustrate my point
highlighting the difficulties of progressing an integrated approach
to solving transport problems at a local level.
Recently Bradford Council has made significant
improvements to its City Centre to improve the environment, safety
and public transport accessibility. Similarly we have entered
into Quality Partnerships, along with the other Districts of West
Yorkshire with major bus operators. However, it is fair to say
that the success of both these initiatives is being hampered by
the lack of priority given by the Police to traffic enforcement
matters. The existing "Policing Plan for West Yorkshire"
gives scant regard for traffic enforcement matters. This is a
direct result of the Police allocating resources to meet Home
Office Targets which do not include traffic enforcement.
Similarly we have experienced difficulties in
progressing Safe Routes to Schools initiatives in spite of being
one of the first authorities to recognise the importance of this
approach related to peak hour traffic congestion. There is a good
working relationship between the Highway Authority and the Education
Authority within the Council but the schools themselves are unwilling
to incorporate road safety and environmental issues into the curriculum
proper and many have little interest in the child's welfare outside
the curtilage of the school. Bradford is at the moment seeking
to move from a three tier to a two tier school system. This in
theory should present the Council with an ideal opportunity to
work in partnership on Safe Routes to Schools initiatives and
to build them in as part of the change. However, I fear this will
not be the case whilst ever the attainment of educational achievement
is the only real performance indicator upon which schools are
judged. A way forward may be to have individual school governors
or heads responsible for the introduction of Safety Audits for
their pupils including the journey to school and parental behaviour.
Unless greater integration on transport policy
matters is achieved by the relevant government departments DETR,
Home Office and DFEE the delivery of integrated transport strategies
at the local level will be frustrated. The need for integration
must first of all be recognised at national level.
Councillor Latif Darr
Chair of Transportation
Planning and Design Committee
City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council