Members from ICE London's Transport Expert Network attended a meeting with London Assembly Members to discuss the issue of congestion. The meeting follows the submission of written evidence to the Transport Committee.
Lawrie Quinn, Project Director for Transportation at Atkins and Chair of ICE London and John Downes, former Head of Engineering Governance and Services, presented a number of solutions that could be used to lower the level of traffic on the roads, including increasing consolidation and harnessing under-utilised capacity on the transport network.
Congestion has been rising in London with journey times taking 12% longer in 2015 than they were in 2012. Reasons for this increase include the growth in online deliveries, construction work and reduced connectivity in Outer London.
Both engineers were keen to emphasise that this was an issue we cannot "build our way out of"; calling instead for decision makers to use the current assets we have better and to use infrastructure projects to encourage modal shift.
Lawrie and John spoke about creating a smarter road user charging system which disincentizes vehicles from staying in the congestion zone for long periods of time. Cities like Singapore, where the charge changes depending on amount of traffic on a particular day, show that London could create a smarter system.
The use of consolidation was also highlighted, with Lawrie and John telling the Committee that a more strategic approach was needed to increase the number of companies using consolidation centres. Consolidation, which works by combining lorry loads to reduce the number of vehicles needed, could see a significant reduction in HGV and LGV use around the city.
Behaviour change was also cited as a key solution to the issue, with the need to make public transport, cycling and walking as attractive as possible to London's residents, commuters and visitors.
Assembly Members present included Transport Committee Chair Caroline Pidgeon, David Kurten, Caroline Russell and Deputy Mayor Joanne McCartney.
You can download the slide pack from the meeting
ICE London would like to thank Lawrie and John as well as all who contributed to the ICE London response.