Motorcyclists To Be Exempt From Traffic Filters In Oxford

News from the Motorcycle Action Group (MAG)

Motorcyclists To Be Exempt From Traffic Filters In Oxford.

The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) welcomes an announcement that
motorcyclists will be exempt from traffic filter trials in Oxford. This
news follows recent success in achieving consideration for motorcycles
as a separate mode of transport in the Oxfordshire Local Transport and
Connectivity Plan.

Oxfordshire County Council has revealed plans for a trial of six traffic
filters in 2023. Traffic filters are being introduced to make bus
journeys quicker and more reliable, and reduce local air pollution. The
proposed trials are seen as a win because mopeds and motorbikes are
included in the list of exempt vehicles.

The exemption for motorcycles is a direct consequence of work by MAG to
convince Oxfordshire County Council that motorcycles need separate
consideration from other motorised vehicles. In response, the Council
has deliberately listed motorcycles as a separate transport mode in its
transport user hierarchy. This deliberate demarcation allows policy
decisions that recognise the benefits that the mode can deliver.

MAG’s Director of Campaigns & Political Engagement, Colin Brown, said:

“It is reassuring to see that the efforts we put into getting this
seemingly innocuous recognition written into the County’s local
transport plan paying dividends. Motorcycles are rarely mentioned as a
separate mode in key transport policy documents and, as a consequence,
simply suffer the same results as cars. Here we see that when they are
considered separately the outcome for riders is very different.
Motorcycles are finally being recognised as part of a solution rather
than as part of the problem. We hope that other councils will sit up
and take note.”

The trial will be introduced as an experimental transport regulation
order (ETRO) following a Pre-ETRO consultation and Cabinet sign off
expected in autumn of 2022. The trial at six locations is planned to
start in Summer 2023.

Cherwell District Councillor John Broad, who has worked tirelessly with
MAG for recognition of the benefits of motorcycling, said:

“By many motorcyclists in Oxfordshire keeping up the pressure on
officers producing the County and City transport plans, results do
eventually occur. The relatively small inconvenience to local
motorcyclists of having to respond to consultations can have big gains
for the future use of motorcycles as a recognised part of the transport
system.”
Following on from news that motorcycles will be exempted from traffic
filter trials in Oxford, MAG has received notice that there are some
councillors and pressure groups trying to get this exemption changed.

Please take the time to respond to the consultation and make a statement
under ‘Do you have any other views on the proposals?’ along the lines
of: “I strongly support the exemption for mopeds and motorcycles; they
make efficient use of road space and should be encouraged.”

The consultation survey can be found here:

We will be submitting a formal response from MAG HQ, but as always a
clear demonstration by large numbers of riders responding will be key to
success.


Email received from Oxford Traffic Filters today:

We are writing to you with an update on transport plans for Oxford and
its surrounding areas, including our proposals for a workplace parking
levy, traffic filters and expanded city centre zero emission zone.

Thank you for engaging with us and giving us your views on these plans
to date. Since announcing these updated proposals in February 2022, we
have had close to a hundred meetings with our partners across the county
including local businesses, resident associations, schools, disability
groups and hospitals.

A request from many of these groups was to phase the consultation and
implementation of the three schemes. We have decided to prioritise the
traffic filters and are now proposing to introduce them as a trial next
summer 2023. This will allow us to monitor the impact of the traffic
filters on the ground, seek views on how they are working and make
changes, if necessary, before any decision is made about whether to make
them permanent or not.

We want your views before making a decision on introducing the trial
traffic fillers. A consultation on trialling the traffic filters started
this week and lasts until 3 October 2022. If approved by county council
cabinet, we would expect the trial to start in the summer of 2023 and
continue for a minimum of six months. Members of the public and
stakeholders will be able to continue to give us their views on the
trial during this six-month period. The implementation of the traffic
filters is needed to unlock the commitment from bus operators Oxford Bus
Company and Stagecoach West and the Department for Transport to invest
in 159 new electric buses in Oxford and allow reinvestment into the
Oxfordshire bus network.

Please visit our website to find out more about the traffic filters and
respond to the survey: letstalk.oxfordshire.gov.uk/traffic-filters-2022.
The survey and supporting documents are now available.

In the meantime, we will also continue with the assessment and modelling
of the likely impact of the traffic filters alongside the workplace
parking levy and zero emission zone on our economy, air quality and
traffic levels in Oxford. Public consultation on the workplace parking
levy and zero emission zone is likely to take place next year. We will
continue to engage with stakeholders and members of the public during
this consultation period.

Local Transport and Connectivity Plan (LTCP) and Central Oxfordshire
Travel Plan

The Local Transport and Connectivity Plan (LTCP) sets out the county
council’s vision for developing a world leading, innovative and carbon
neutral transport system with a focus on how people move safely and
quickly around their communities, the city and the county. The LTCP was
adopted by full council on 12 July 2022.

As part of the LTCP, the council is developing area travel plans that
will outline how the LTCP vision and outcomes are delivered across the
county. The Central Oxfordshire Travel Plan is the first of these travel
plans that defines how the LTCP vision will be delivered in Oxford,
Kidlington, Eynsham, Botley, Cumnor, Kennington and Wheatley. It is one
of a number of area travel plans to be developed for the county.

You can find out more about the travel plan for central Oxfordshire and
give us your views by visiting:
letstalk.oxfordshire.gov.uk/central-oxfordshire-travel-plan. The survey
is open till 3 October 2022.

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