Sustainable transport charity Living Streets has launched a manifesto for walking in the capital, which calls on the next incumbent of City Hall to bring forward the current target of reducing motor traffic by a fifth by a full 17 years.
The Mayor’s Transport Strategy looks to shrink the proportion of private vehicle journeys in London from 37% in 2015 to 20% in 2041. But the charity calls for the 20% figure to be reached by 2024.
Further measures set out in the manifesto include making routes to school safer and less congested for those on foot, to encourage families to walk their children to class; and the creation of a Central London Walking Network with easy to use, low pollution routes for pedestrians.
The charity also points out that a quarter of all trips made in London are by foot, but account for over half of on street fatalities. It also says that 9400 premature deaths in the capital every year can be attributed to air pollution and that 40% of Londoners do not meet the recommended physical activity level.
Living Streets policy director Stephen Edwards said: “London is in the midst of climate, air pollution, public health and road safety crises. Reducing car dominance and making walking the easiest and safest option for everyday journeys is a key part of the solution.
“Walking is often overlooked. It’s time this changed and that measures which protect people walking were prioritised.”
London goes to the polls to elect a new Mayor on 7 May.
(Photograph: Alastair Lloyd)