Policy CO 1: Sustainable Travel and Transport

To deliver the council objectives of delivering a safe, sustainable, high quality, integrated transport system that encourages a modal shift away from car travel to public transport, cycling and walking; supportive of the needs of residents and businesses and preparing for carbon free modes of transport, the council will expect development to:

  1. Reduce the need to travel by:
    1. Guiding development to sustainable and accessible locations or locations that can be made sustainable and accessible;
    2. Ensuring development gives priority to walking, cycling and public transport within its design;
    3. Encouraging more flexible working patterns and home working;
    4. Supporting improvements to communication technology for business, education, shopping and leisure purposes and;
    5. Supporting measures that reduce the level of trips made by single occupancy vehicles.
  2. Improve pedestrian facilities so that walking is attractive for shorter journeys footnote 82 including:
    1. Supporting the priority of pedestrians at the top of the road user hierarchy and making sure that in settlements, town centres and residential areas, the public realm environment reflects this priority;
    2. Supporting safe and secure access for mobility and visually impaired persons including mobility scooter users and parents with pushchairs;
    3. Creating safe and secure footways and paths linking with public transport and other services;
    4. Ensuring new developments are convenient, safe and pleasant to access on foot;
    5. Supporting work to improve canal towpaths and public rights of way where they can provide key linkages from developments to local facilities;
    6. Supporting measures that introduce safe routes to schools; and
    7. Ensuring a selective and ongoing review of speed limits, as appropriate.
  3. Improve cyclist facilities so that cycling is attractive for shorter journeys footnote 83 including:
    1. Creating safe and pleasant links for cyclists travelling around the borough;
    2. Providing secure cycle parking facilities at new developments, at public transport hubs, town centres and at community facilities;
    3. Improving route signing;
    4. Working with community groups to develop local cycling initiatives and seek external funding to assist with the development of the local network; and
    5. Supporting the priority for cyclists over single occupancy vehicles by making sure that in settlements, town centres and residential areas, the public realm environment reflects this priority.
  4. Improve public transport integration, facilities, capacity, service levels, access for all users and reliability footnote 84 including:
    1. Rail infrastructure - current schemes comprise:
      1. Improvements to Crewe Railway Station, promoting its role as a national rail hub and providing associated connectivity for buses;
      2. Supporting the aspiration for re-opening the Sandbach to Northwich railway line to passengers including the opening of a station at Middlewich;
      3. Supporting proposals for rail infrastructure and the provision of rail facilities as appropriate; and
      4. Engaging in proposals for improving rail connectivity through High Speed Rail.
    2. Bus Infrastructure - current schemes comprise:
      1. Improvements to Crewe Bus Station.
    3. Improving public transport service levels, which may involve developers temporarily subsidising new bus services or the extension of an existing service to provide additional journeys, or supporting community transport initiatives to enable sustainable access to new development;
    4. Engaging in proposals for improving rail connectivity through the Northern Hub capacity improvement scheme;
    5. Considering options to enhance Bus Priority at junctions and the provision of dedicated bus lanes; and
    6. Considering opportunities to improve cross border connectivity with neighbouring areas.
  5. Improve and develop appropriate road, rail and water freight transport routes and associated intermodal freight transport facilities in order to assist in the sustainable and efficient movement of goods.


14.8 The National Planning Policy Framework states that "transport policies have an important role to play in facilitating sustainable development but also in contributing to wider sustainability and health objectives. Smarter use of technologies can reduce the need to travel. The transport system needs to be balanced in favour of sustainable transport modes, giving people a real choice about how they travel'. Therefore 'encouragement should be given to solutions which support reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and reduce congestion".

14.9 To effectively influence the individual’s choice about their mode of travel, a range of options must be available that provide accessible, attractive, safe and reliable alternative options in respect of cost, time and convenience. Public transport has an important role to play in planning for sustainability and future needs by facilitating sustainable developments, as well as by encouraging a shift towards low carbon transport. An increase in the number of shorter journeys made on foot will contribute towards sustainability by reducing carbon emissions, as well as being beneficial for health and tackling congestion.

14.10 Investment in a high quality public realm linking housing, employment and town and village centres encourages people to walk and cycle and positively manages vehicular access that enables more sustainable patterns of travel. Well designed places with excellent public realm can quickly establish the key function of a place therefore promoting the legibility of towns and villages, and encouraging more sustainable lifestyles.

14.11 Cheshire East has strong links with neighbouring areas with an extensive road and rail network including the M6 and West Coast Main Line giving access to Greater Manchester and London Euston.

14.12 An effective freight network is essential for delivering sustainable economic growth. However, the transportation of freight on roads through existing residential areas would not be considered appropriate.

14.13 Policy Y1 (Travel to Education) of the Local Transport Plan 2011-2026 states that the council will work with schools and colleges to enable sustainable travel to education, including appropriate provision for those eligible for free or assisted transport.

14.14 Policy H8 (Road Safety) of the Local Transport Plan 2011-2026 states that the council will improve road safety and take account of vulnerable road users. This includes the consideration of where reduced speed limits would be appropriate (e.g. 20's Plenty Campaign for residential areas).

14.15 As currently proposed, the line of High Speed 2 (HS2) passes through the borough. HS2 will have significant benefits for the borough and the sub-region and is anticipated to connect to the West Coast Main Line just south of Crewe and will travel through parts of the borough. In addition, Manchester Airport lies immediately to the north of the borough offering world wide services.

14.16 Improved cross boundary and public transport connections are sought with all surrounding Local Authority areas and will be progressed through ongoing Duty to Co-operate arrangements.

Key Evidence

  1. Cheshire East Local Transport Plan 2011-2026
  2. Cheshire East Local Transport Plan - Implementation Plan 2011-15
  3. Cheshire East Rights of Way Improvement Plan 2011-2026
  4. Cheshire East Rights of Way Improvement Plan - Implementation Plan 2011-2015
  5. Town Strategies for Alsager, Congleton, Middlewich, Sandbach and Wilmslow, Draft Town Strategies for Crewe, Handforth, Knutsford, Macclesfield, Nantwich and Poynton

(Footnote 82) In line with Policy S7: Walking and Policy Y1: Travel to Education of the Local Transport Plan 2011-2026.

(Footnote 83) In line with Policy S8: Cycling of the Local Transport Plan 2011-2026.

(Footnote 84) In line with Policy S3: Public Transport (integration and facilities) and Policy S4: Public Transport (service and reliability) of the Local Transport Plan 2011-2026.

Policy information


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