HITRANS Active and Sustainable Travel Masterplans
The SCAPE framework has enabled us to gain easy access to a quality team with whom we have been able to build a strong relationship, as well as working collaboratively to deliver efficient and innovative solutions. Arup’s Active Travel team has demonstrated their ability to be flexible, creative and inclusive throughout the projects we’ve worked on together. They have consistently provided us with excellent service in a timely manner.”
Vikki Trelfer | Active Travel Officer, HITRANS
Integrating communities by providing greater accessibility and connectivity for everyone.
Over the last two years Arup has successfully delivered several active and sustainable travel projects for HITRANS. The main aim of these projects is to identify routes and actions to encourage walking and cycling for everyday journeys, as well as improve access to key services and amenities for residents and visitors.
The projects have focussed on various villages, towns and areas across the geographic spread of the Highlands & Islands, including the Outer Hebrides, Skye and Raasay and Inner Moray Firth.
In the Outer Hebrides, several active travel plans were developed for settlements to identify actions and encourage walking, wheeling and cycling. Arup carried out virtual site audits and engaged with key stakeholders and communities using digital platforms such as Commonplace. The outcome was a developed set of routes and actions for each settlement.
Within the Inner Moray Firth, Arup developed active travel masterplans for various towns along with a connecting long-distance cycle network. The project had a focus on community since the travel between the towns to the Highland’s capital of Inverness is critical for reaching essential goods and services. The team developed routes and actions based on desktop reviews, virtual site audits and stakeholder workshops. Detailed analysis and mapping were carried out along with the costings and prioritisation of interventions to produce an action plan for each settlement, which fed into The Highland Council’s Local Development Plan for the area.
Recently, Arup developed a Highland-wide Active Travel Network Delivery Plan based on the actions informed within the active travel masterplans for the main settlements in The Highland Council area, which Arup had previously delivered. A prioritisation strategy was developed using a multi-criteria assessment of all 135 interventions in the masterplans. Using qualitative and quantitative data sources and digital mapping, a prioritised list of interventions was recommended to take forward for further funding considerations.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic and clients’ preferences, many of the HITRANS projects were delivered entirely remotely. Arup was able to utilise a variety of digital tools to conduct effective virtual site audits along with stakeholder and community engagement.
Following several successful projects, Arup has developed a great working relationship with HITRANS, as well as an understanding of rural and remote transport constraints and opportunities through effective methods of digital engagement.