CREDS is a research centre established in 2018 with a vision to make the UK a leader in understanding the changes in energy demand needed for the transition to a secure and affordable, low carbon energy system.

In this article CREDS discusses what kind of stimulus package will be required to ‘reboot’ the economy for the transport sector after covid-19 in a low carbon way.

There are four realities CREDS think define the critical choices ahead of government including the fact that people have now experienced much better air quality, quieter streets, safer roads for cycling. It is now undeniable that different policy choices are available.

CREDS outline five sets of investment options which they say will define “whether our shovel ready schemes are genuinely transformative and green or simply dig us into a bigger hole” and one of these is to re-engineer cities for people.

The pandemic has publicly revealed that there is considerable suppressed demand for walking and cycling in safe conditions, which many people have campaigned for over the years. With public transport capacity limited for the foreseeable future, and local high streets under immense pressure from the shift to online shopping, there is an urgent need to make these the modes of choice for as many people as possible.

“This is not optional: even with reduced office working, our cities will grind to a heavily polluted halt if the shortfall in public transport capacity is accommodated by increased car travel. In addition to the large-scale roadspace reallocation in towns and cities to walking, cycling and buses, which could be delivered in tandem with the road maintenance plan”