Innovation and changeDigital TransformationDiscussion paper urges councils to consider transport technology

Discussion paper urges councils to consider transport technology

The Local Government Association (LGA) has launched a new publication discussing what transport technology could mean for councils.

The Local Government Association (LGA) has launched a new publication discussing what transport technology could mean for councils.

The discussion paper explores the major transition in cars and road vehicle technology that could eventually see our current vehicles replaced by transportation that is fully electric, automated and connected.

This combination of technologies will bring about the most significant change in how we travel since the invention of the internal combustion engine and it is important that local government is part of the discussion.

Clean, connected and in-control: What tomorrow’s transport technology could mean for councils examines developments we can expect; how innovative councils are getting involved in trials and the issues that all councils will need to address in the future. It is also a call for engagement from different groups with an involvement in the area to feed ideas in and help better understand the potential of future transport technologies.

The role of local government will be pivotal in shaping how this technology fits and develops in communities and decisions taken now could have a profound impact on the future, the LGA says.

Cllr Martin Tett, LGAs Transport spokesman, said: “Local government needs to be active in the conversation about the future of transport technology. If we are able to work in partnership with business, manufacturers and regulators, this technology could be harnessed to solve some of the most complex issues that we face.

“From a local leadership perspective, the potential for public good from this technological revolution is significant, but the opportunities need to be grasped and challenges overcome.

“Decisions taken now could have profound impacts on the shape of our communities. The role of local leaders is to reflect on how technological trends could affect their area and how these developments could be harnessed to solve other problems. It is the job of councils to plan the future shape of our towns and cities and we hope this guide will serve as a useful primer to get local politicians and senior officers thinking about the impact on their area.”

The full publication can be downloaded here.

Last year, the Institution of Engineering & Technology (ITE) published a guide to emerging transport technology for local authorities. Targeted at local government officers, elected members and their consultants, it explains how technology can aid delivery of a range of policy objectives, from reducing emissions to assisting smooth traffic flows. Furthermore the guide features a variety of case studies demonstrating how innovative technologies are already being used to improve local transport services around the country.

At the launch, IET President Jeremy Watson, said: “It is important that as new technologies emerge, local authorities are aware of the latest developments and are supported in obtaining the right information on whether such technology is the right option for them.

“By exploring new procurement models and encouraging local authorities to specify technology in a more informed way, the report aims to help local authorities do more for less.”

 

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