Event – the Future of Transport in Oxford – 20 July 2022
Oxford’s transport system faces multiple challenges and needs to serve a diverse range of people with diverse needs.
With this in mind, CoHSAT organised an open, free, public event with an expert panel to discuss the challenges, potential solutions and how they might affect people.
Over 120 people attended, and 200 viewed online – more have viewed since on this link and below.
- Cllr Andrew Gant, Cabinet Member for Highway Management, Oxfordshire County Council
- Cllr Louise Upton, Cabinet Member for Health and Transport, Oxford City Council
- Luke Marion, Interim Managing Director, Oxford Bus Company
- Professor Tim Schwanen, Director of the Transport Studies Unit and Professor of Transport Geography, University of Oxford
Cllr Gant gave an overview of the transport-related challenges facing the city, including climate change, congestion, equality and health, and then moved on to the Council’s overall strategy and emerging plans to improve bus services and increase the amount of walking and cycling, aided by plans for traffic filters, a workplace parking levy and an expanded Zero Emissions Zone. He stressed that these are an overlapping group of actions that can only be implemented as government funds permit, but that will ultimately work together.
The panel were then asked questions by the chair, putting them on the spot on the complex issues. These were mainly the most popular questions, with some additions from Shaista herself. Questions included ‘What about people who need a car?’, ‘How will marginalised communities be listened to?’ and whether the bus companies supported the proposals.
Luke Marion confirmed that the level of bus services is a function of how much they are used and, at the moment, we are still not at pre-pandemic levels. We need to get back on our buses, if we want to keep them. Reduced fares for Park & Ride and the under-19s are coming.
Louise Upton stated that E-bikes are transformational and need promoting.
Tim Schwanen supported the use of segregated cycle paths and stated that it is essential to take road space from cars.
Fran Way, Digital Editor of the Oxford Mail provided a live transcript of many of the questions and answers.
This event was just the start. It was designed to give members of the public an informed and mature discussion and it fulfilled that function well. The future of transport in Oxford is of vital interest to us all. CoHSAT aims to build on it in the most inclusive ways we can. If you have a community group in Oxfordshire that would like to discuss transport and how it affects people, get in touch with us at email@example.com and we’ll work with you to arrange a suitable format. We look forward to further events when the Councils publish their proposals.