Rural communities across the UK are a key contributor to the economy and are home to over 12 million people. But as our major cities have generally benefited from easier, safer and cheaper transport and mobility, over recent decades rural areas have been left behind.
The state of rural mobility today is not inevitable. Transport is a derived demand. It is a result of how society and services have evolved and the behaviours that have become ingrained over time. The solution lies in looking across sectors, in undertaking joined-up planning to find answers that improve access to the things that we all do and are dependent upon.
That is why WSP and legal firm Foot Anstey want to start a conversation with our clients and with communities about rural mobility. This paper reflects on the key issues and complexities within rural communities and presents back an outcome-focussed approach to how we can level-up and facilitate greener, happier, healthier, but also more productive, prosperous, quieter and safer communities. We are calling this the 30-minute rural community.
In the paper you will find:
- Ten key issues associated with rural mobility including social isolation, car dependency and limited public transport.
- Nine core objectives to be considered when trying to develop a more connected rural community built around three pillars – reducing, changing and improving.
- Seven tactics that can be used to utilise existing networks and organisational structures to improve rural connectivity.