Britain’s poor transport system is one of the biggest moans of British business and the first report of John Redwood’s Competitiveness policy group offers some ideas for improving it. Visiting Barnet later today Mr Redwood will present a ten point plan to help achieve a "greener, cleaner, safer" transport system.
News reports have focused on the report’s suggestion that motorists might be permitted to adopt the US practice of turning left at a red traffic light. This ‘turn left’ provision is only one small part of the main mission to improve traffic flows at junctions where both congestion and accidents are concentrated.
A host of recommendations, Mr Redwood told the Today programme, will all serve to widen the space available for traffic at junctions and segregate different types of traffic. Other recommendations include, according to Sky:
- "Building new carriageways… and widening junctions and lanes around large roundabouts.
- "Rephasing traffic lights to give priority to main roads, putting cycle lanes on pavements where there is room and allowing taxis and motorbikes to use bus lanes."
- "More pedestrian footbridges or underpasses and reviewing speed limits."
Mr Redwood believes that local councils can start to implement these ideas now. He criticised Liberal Democrat and Labour councils that are always trying to reduce traffic. Business, he suggested, might help to fund improvements at junctions.
The Conservative Party is not obliged to embrace Mr Redwood’s recommendations. All of the policy groups are only advisory.