Low Traffic Neighbourhoods

Since the local elections in Bath where the Liberal Democrats were given an even bigger majority than in 2019, there should be no excuse for not continuing the policy of Liveable Streets (Low Traffic neighbourhoods), which were applied by the Tories. Bath is now a “no go zone” for Tory councillors. This can happen while we still have a “first past the post” electoral system.

The simple definition of Low Traffic Neighbourhoods, sometimes called Liveable Neighbourhoods, is residential streets where through traffic is prevented from driving through and creating “rat runs”, making the streets safer and less polluted. All the streets have access for cars being driven by people who live there. Access is allowed for walkers and bike riders and wheel chairs. Through traffic is directed to the main roads.

One of the main criticisms has been that this will increase pollution and congestion by putting more traffic on main roads. However, studies have proved that even over a short period of time traffic does not increase, as more people walk, use bikes or buses for the short journeys they would otherwise have taken by car. This of course is one of the benefits of LTNs of getting more people into Active Travel. As well as making streets more pleasant for people living in them, there are health and fitness benefits for many.

Of course getting more people into Active Travel will also help the UK towards net Zero emissions therebye combatting Climate Change. What is there to dislike about these LTNs? There has been opposition to LTNs in some areas because drivers are notoriously against any moves to restrict where they can drive their cars. This is a sad comment on the car culture in the UK.

I fail to I understand what is so divisive about Low Traffic Neighbourhoods, when they are simply putting through traffic on to roads that were built for this purpose.

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