UK’s vision for ‘smarter’ transport

New ideas and technologies will help the UK’s transport system transition into becoming “smarter”. That’s the view of Transport Minister Andrew Jones who said the “ultimate objective” of the government is to make […]

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By Jacqueline Echevarria

New ideas and technologies will help the UK’s transport system transition into becoming “smarter”.

That’s the view of Transport Minister Andrew Jones who said the “ultimate objective” of the government is to make vehicles smart so “smart travel becomes the norm – wherever we live”.

Speaking at a conference in London yesterday he added: “So everyone takes for granted the smarter travel options we are discussing today – to reduce congestion on our streets, cut pollution and CO2 emissions and make transport as safe and affordable as possible. Admittedly, we’re some way from achieving that at the moment.

“The challenge we face is not just to make vehicles cleaner and build environments that make it easier to walk or cycle. It’s also to encourage behavioural change by developing attractive and affordable options and show how that will meet people’s travel needs while benefiting our society and economy.”

Mr Jones said the government has announced 23 schemes to boost smart vehicles since 2014.

They include the government’s £100 million Intelligent Mobility Fund and £75 million to develop low carbon and energy efficient technologies in the industry.

He added the UK is one of the largest markets for electric vehicles in the EU and the fourth biggest in the world.

Mr Jones said: “We now have the most comprehensive rapid charge point network in Europe. All this keeps us on track for all cars and vans on our roads to be effectively zero emission by 2050.”

He claims during this Parliament more than 400 lane miles of smart motorways will also been built to reduce congestion, improve journey times and smooth traffic flow.

He also announced the government will provide £30 million for low emissions buses from until 2019.

Mr Jones went on: “This scheme builds on nearly £90 million of funding provided through the Green Bus Fund to support the purchase of over 1,200 new low carbon emission buses.

“So we have a fantastic opportunity over the next few years to transform the way we think about and use transport.”