County Council praised for Local Transport Plan progress

PUBLISHED: 11:26 22 January 2009 | UPDATED: 12:17 17 June 2010

DEVON County Council has been praised by the Government for its work in improving local transport for Devon residents.

DEVON County Council has been praised by the Government for its work in improving local transport for Devon residents.

Government Office for the South West (GOSW) has welcomed the Devon Local Transport Plan (LTP) Progress Plan 2006-2011 in a letter to the County Council, highlighting that Devon County Council's achievements in encouraging school travel plans are "impressive."

89% of schools in Devon now have travel plans that are promoting healthy and more environmentally friendly ways of getting to school. GOSW said this "has the potential to make a significant dent in the proportions of children being driven to school and consequently contribute towards healthy travel and reduce or at least limit the growth in congestion and childhood obesity."

The report also highlights other successes, including:

· Bus passenger numbers increased to a total of 23.9 million passengers in 2007/08, against a falling national trend;

· The Cycle Exeter Project being awarded extra funding for achievements and progress, and increased cycling levels in Devon with more children and adults cycling to school and work than ever before;

· More than 5,700 people registered on by March 2008;

· Barnstaple Western Bypass delivered on time and within budget;

· Improvements in Barnstaple Square & Strand and Exeter High Street and Newton Abbot, and DCC contribution to the successful delivery of Princesshay in Exeter;

· 95% of Public Rights of Way are designated 'easy to use'.

Devon County Council is on track to deliver or exceed 15 out of 22 targets and has already exceeded targets for improving Rights of Way, increasing bus passenger numbers, improving access to services and in delivering school travel plans.

Councillor Margaret Rogers, Devon County Council Executive Member for Environment, said: "Devon County Council has made good progress in delivering its objectives and will continue to build on its success. This report has been important in order to reflect on our achievements. Successful delivery of Devon's Local Transport Plan will help to ensure that Devon has a transport system that can meet the needs of the community as well as improving safety and reducing the impact on the environment."

GOSW recognised Devon County Council's other achievements in being awarded Beacon Status for Road Safety in 2006 - 2007, Transport Local Authority of the Year 2006/07 National Transport Awards (NTA) 2006, a winner of the Green Apple Award for the Barnstaple Bypass in 2008 and Highly Commended in the National Transport Awards (NTA) award for Walking and Public Realm 2008.

GOSW also states that Devon County Council has "made good progress towards tackling congestion in Exeter. We are pleased to note that you have put measures in place to quantify and monitor this situation and we feel this is prudent use of resources'."

The full report can be viewed at:

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