Expert judging panel to decide on visionary transport projects

Sustrans PictureA group of Scotland’s foremost transport and planning experts has been selected to assess bids for groundbreaking community-led active travels schemes across the country.

Minister for Transport and the Islands, Humza Yousaf, welcomed the announcement and said he was confident the panel would select a blueprint that would improve cycling and walking infrastructure in Scotland for years to come.

The judges, who will be chaired by Roy Brannen, chief executive of Transport Scotland, will meet on July 12th 2016 to decide upon a winner from five game-changing projects aimed at enabling more walking and cycling as part of the Community Links PLUS design competition developed by Sustrans Scotland. The shortlisted finalists include two submissions from Glasgow and one each from Edinburgh, East Dunbartonshire and Inverness.

The winning project will receive substantial funding from Transport Scotland to deliver an exemplary design that demonstrates the many benefits that well-designed cycling and walking infrastructure can bring, by making places safer, easier to use, healthier, cleaner, more attractive and successful.

This year’s multi-disciplinary panel of experts are:

  1. Mr Roy Brannen, chief executive, Transport Scotland
  2. Dr Dave Caesar, national clinical advisor to the chief medical officer, NHS Scotland

  3. Ms Katy Hunter, consultant, BRE Scotland, representing the 2050 Climate Group
  4. Mr Riccardo Marini, director, Gehl Architects
  5. Ms Sara Thiam, regional director, Institution of Civil Engineers
  6. Mr Stuart Watson, senior architect, Planning and Architecture Division, The Scottish Government.

  7. Humza Yousaf said: “Community Links PLUS is a new and innovative competition which will take cycling and walking infrastructure delivery to the next level. It is great to see this initiative has been led into the final stages by a panel of experts looking at these exemplary projects.

    “I am confident those awarded funding will provide the blueprint for others to follow in years to come, ensuring the people of Scotland have better and smarter choices to make for their everyday travel.”

    Community Links PLUS attracted twenty-five applications from twenty-four local authorities across Scotland. The entries, initially narrowed down to ten pioneering projects, sought to re-balance Scotland’s streets in favour of walking and cycling.

    On January 29 the five finalists were selected by a cross-sector panel comprising: Neil Langhorn and Karen Furey - Transport Scotland; Stuart Watson - Scottish Government; John Howie - NHS Health Scotland; Keith Irving - Cycling Scotland; Stuart Hay - Living Streets; Colin Howden - Transform Scotland; and Ian Findlay - Paths for All.

    John Lauder, national director of Sustrans Scotland said: “Community Links PLUS has sought big, bold and innovative ideas that support the Cycling Action Plan for Scotland vision that by 2020, 10 per cent of everyday journeys in Scotland will be made by bike. These five entries are all of the highest quality and represent bold visions to allow people to choose to walk and cycle more easily for every day trips.

    “The Scottish Government and local authorities are rightly prioritising walking and cycling for their many benefits, not least to people’s health, air pollution, traffic congestion and public life. Like other Northern European countries Scotland is aiming to offer people better facilities that enable more active and less sedentary lifestyles.”

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