Combining Aspirations for Developmental Growth, Renewal and Sustainable Mobility. Analysis from Swindon.

Combining Aspirations for Developmental Growth, Renewal and Sustainable Mobility. Analysis from Swindon.


R Hickman, Halcrow/Oxford University TSU, UK; C Seaborn, G Walters, Halcrow, UK; O Ashiru, Halcrow/Takedo, UK; J Jackson, Swindon Borough Council, UK


The integration of planning and transport investment is analysed using the case study of Swindon, UK. Using multi-criteria analysis the paper examines the potential for development growth, town centre renewal, and sustainable mobility.


Transport policy analysis and planning is facing new challenges. This is most keenly experienced in urban areas with large growth plans, yet aspirations for achieving sustainable mobility. Swindon?s history is a classic story of interrelated transport investment and planned developmental growth. It has moved from small market town to Railway Town (Isambard Kingdom Brunel opened the Junction Station in 1842), to Expanded Town (Town Development Act, 1952), and was massively expanded in the 1950s and 1960s, with a current population of 180,000. The plan is to continue the development growth, with a focus on town centre renewal, and to reach a population of 250,000 by 2030. Clearly there are large implications for carbon dioxide (CO2) footprint and wider sustainability objectives.

Wide ranging and divergent policy objectives - including economic growth and regeneration, environmental and social inclusion goals - mean that the multi-criteria appraisal (MCA) of potential transport scenarios becomes increasingly critical. This paper reports on work being developed in Swindon as part of the regional ?Delivering a Sustainable Transport Strategy? (DaSTS) study, funded by the UK Department for Transport.

A systematic process is developed for sifting the ?long list? of schemes and interventions, developing packages and scenarios. It utilises an innovative MCA methodology for developing and discussing policy packages and scenarios. Multiple scenarios ? covering rail, bus, walk and cycle improvements, highway infrastructure, traffic demand management measures, pricing regimes, urban planning, low emission vehicles and alternative fuels ? can all be considered against multi-criteria sustainability indicators. The analysis hence develops ?optimised? scenarios which score well against broad sustainability (economic, environmental and social) goals. The special context of Swindon, including the historic development path and growth aspirations, mean that the lessons learnt in policy appraisal have wider resonance for integrated transport planning and city development across Europe and internationally.


Association for European Transport