On Tuesday 15th November, over 60 guests joined us at the Future Economy Centre to explore sustainable travel and transport, and learn how organisations can embed good transport into their business.
After a delicious and sustainably sourced breakfast of Danish pastries, Matthew Tudge (General Manager of Low Carbon South West) opened the event with a warm welcome to the Future Economy Centre (FEC). The FEC is a collaborative space where like-minded organisations can co-locate and innovate together. It is one of the few major sectoral clusters in the UK, and the Low Carbon South West team are extremely proud about the new initiative.
To start the mornings talks, Ian Townsend, CEO of Bristol Green Capital Partnership, introduced what the partnership does to encourage businesses to continue the good work of the European Green Capital 2015.
One of the aims of BGCP is to collaborate inclusively across the Bristol city-region to realise the change needed to address environmental sustainability challenges. Ian spoke about how they have been addressing the theme of transport, with the following work addressing the issues:
- Active Transport Group created in 2015 run-up: now the Sustainable Transport Network
- The Good Transport Plan: stakeholder/launch events
- 2016 regional transport plan
Ian encouraged businesses to get involved by subscribing to their newsletter for events and consider becoming a BGCP member. If you’re interested, head over to their website for more information.
See Ian’s Slides here
To follow, Jon Usher from Sustrans talked about the Good Transport Plan for Bristol. He explored how cities like Bristol need to work proactively and with foresight, due to growing congestion problems, changing urban behaviours and growth.
He went onto explore the current transport plans for Bristol (see the slides here for a clear diagram), including new cycle corridors and walk ways along with the planned new MetroBus links. These new transport plans aim to get people to start thinking the transport they take, and to encourage people to use public transport links and cycle networks.
Next to speak was Adam Crowther, who is Strategic City Transport Service Manager at Bristol City Council. Adam talked about the West of England Joint Transport Study and explored the transport vision for the West of England.
Adam mentioned that Bristol is a very fast growing region and investment into transport must be taken to keep up with the population and economic growth. The Bristol region is still very car dependent, but the area is seeing progression within cycling, bus and rail travel improvements and uptake.
Adam explored the transport vision the council has for Bristol, including the ambition for a core light rapid transit network, local rail improvements, new motorway junctions, and the key role the new MetroBus scheme is playing. He went through all the new slip roads and improved public spaces that have been implemented for the MetroBus and cycling users, expressing that progression to a good transport system is steadily on its way.
To see Adam’s slides, click here
Lucy McMillan and Esther Coffin-Smith from Southmead Hospital, part of North Bristol NHS Trust, were the next presenters, sharing how the hospital was promoting and exploring sustainable travel options within the Trust.
They went into detail about all the new improved infrastructure that has been built, including:
- Improved cycling provisions: 1245 cycle parking spaces, a new cycle centre, visitor cycle parking, pathology secure cycle store
- Improved bus provision: 4 new bus stops, 23 bus services every hour
- Electric Vehicle Charging Provision: rapid vehicles charging points, 3 Co-Wheels car club hybrid cars
They also discussed initiatives such as their Travel Smart Initiative, which includes a loan bike scheme, bus travel discounts, travel smart roadshows, Dr Bike bike maintenance, bike security tagging and a pedometer challenge.
The sustainability team at North Bristol NHS Trust have also been conducting transport surveys on staff and patients, finding most patients travel by car. Lucy and Esther expressed they are constantly encouraging staff and patients to take a sustainable method of transport to the hospital.
To see their slides, click here
Finally, Toby Collis from Co-Wheels spoke about their new and exciting electric bike schemes. He talked about a the fact that Co-wheels are developing a mobility solution for businesses in Bristol as part of an EU Horizon 2020 funded project being led by Bristol City Council which will involve both electric cars and electric bikes.
Working with other project partners Co-Wheels are starting to design engagement activities that will help to inform the most appropriate scheme in which to launch the e-bikes at the end of 2017/start of 2018.
To see Toby’s slides, click here.
Once all the presentations were finished it was time for our infamous sixty second pitches from our stallholders:
We would like to thank all of our speakers and stallholders for making this breakfast one of our most well-attended events yet, and also a huge thank you to all those who attended – we hope you found it engaging and worthwhile!
If you are not already a Go Green or Low Carbon South West member, but would like to know more about the opportunities and benefits that membership can offer, please visit our membership page or get in touch with Matthew Tudge for a chat about working together.