New development standards to encourage sustainable travel

Hart District Council has approved new planning guidance for new developments that will support the shift to more sustainable modes of transport.

The aim of the new advice is to achieve sufficient and well-designed cycle and car parking with new developments, encouraging a shift towards more sustainable, active travel.

Cllr. Graham Cockraill, Cabinet Member for Place, said: “The new guidance addresses both cycle and car parking consistent with objectives for modal shift.

“Firstly, secure cycle parking will significantly increase on new developments – potentially up to six cycle parking spaces (for a five-bedroom house), and an allocation for visitor cycle parking.

“This parking will accommodate a range of electric, cargo and adapted cycles, and at least one cycle space to be provided close to the front door for convenience.

“Secondly, sufficient, well-designed car parking will be required to avoid displaced car parking such as half-on, half-off the pavement. Displaced car parking makes it more difficult to walk or cycle around places easily, safely and enjoyably.”

The need to move to more sustainable modes of transport is ever increasing with Climate Change being a priority for Hart District Council. Transport (excluding aviation) is the second highest contributor of individual household carbon emissions, contributing 27%* of a household’s carbon footprint. The solutions to these are to use petrol cars significantly less (especially for those under 1 mile journeys), cycle, walk and use public transport where possible (“modal shift”) and upgrade to electric vehicles.

The new guidance will combine with two existing schemes that support modal shift:

1. New building regulations that took effect in June 2022 that mean all new homes and building in England are required by law to install electric vehicle charging points.

2. As part of this wider picture the Council has a vision for a Green Grid of routes between settlements and green spaces to encourage walking, cycling and other forms of sustainable healthy transport.

Cllr. David Neighbour, Leader of Hart District Council, said: “This is an important step towards encouraging a shift to more sustainable travel on new developments. We all know we need to walk and cycle more but having the infrastructure to make it as easy and convenient to do so is necessary.”

The update to the guidance will take immediate effect and will be a material consideration in the determination of planning applications.

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