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Transport policy


Transport policies help us decide where best to spend money to improve transport for everyone.

These policies help us decide which pavements and roads need investment and guides council spending when supporting public transport, parking areas or better cycling routes.

North East Transport Plan (NETP)

The North East Transport Plan sets out the region's transport ambitions to 2035. It is made up of around 243 schemes worth £6.8bn of transport investment. The Plan will boost the health, environment, and economy of the North East, covering several local council areas (Durham, Gateshead, South Tyneside, Sunderland, Newcastle upon Tyne, North Tyneside, and Northumberland). The objectives in the Plan include a healthier North East, appealing sustainable transport choices, and a safe and secure transport network.

Transport North East have also published their North East Active Travel Strategy. This strategy aims to encourage more active travel - walking, wheeling, and cycling - across the North East and sets out proposals to help people travel more actively, more often. The central ambition to the strategy is to increase short (under five mile) active travel journeys by 45% by 2035.

They have also published their Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP) which outlines region wide ambitions to make buses more attractive by making them an affordable and practical alternative to using private cars for more people and helping existing bus users to travel more frequently.

Find out more about Regional transport campaigns and initiatives.

County Durham Plan

The County Durham Plan (CDP) was adopted in 2020. It includes key transport policies which relate to new development opportunities that require planning permission. 

Specifically related to transport is CDP Policy 21, Delivering Sustainable Transport, and Policy 22, Durham City Sustainable Transport. Both policies aim to reduce car traffic through improving and encouraging access to sustainable transport, including cycling and walking. There is also a requirement for access to sustainable forms of transport to be integrated into the design of new developments.

Supporting transport policy adopted documents

Parking and Accessibility Supplementary Planning Document (SPD)

The 2023 guidelines for parking and accessibility have been devised to help everyone understand how much parking space is required on development sites. They are designed to make sure there is enough parking at our homes and for our shops and employment locations. A higher provision of Electric Vehicle Charging Points will also be required at places of employment, supermarkets and other retail development. The guidelines also have been designed to encourage the use of more sustainable modes of travel including walking, cycling and use of public transport.

Residential Highway Design Guide

The Highways Design Guide was amended in 2023 to reflect the proposed changes to minimum road widths in residential estates. The guide requires all residential estate roads to be 5.5m wide, regardless of the size of the development. The previous minimum width on developments of less than 100 dwellings, could be reduced to 4.8m. There is a more comprehensive review of this document in process.

Durham City Sustainable Transport Delivery Plan

The Durham City Sustainable Transport Delivery Plan (DCSTDP) 2019-35 provides a framework to deliver improvements to the Durham City transport network in order to promote sustainable travel. The Delivery Plan is a mixture of short and longer-term measures and supports both the existing and proposed Local Plan for the City, the existing Local Transport Plan and also the Durham City Air Quality Action Plan. 

Icon for pdf Durham Sustainable Transport Delivery Plan 2019-2035 (PDF, 4.4mb)

Durham City Sustainable Transport Delivery Plan Progress Report (DCSTDP)

The DCSTDP 2019 progress report documents progress on the 'Delivery Plan' since the DCSTDP was launched in 2016 and sets out progress in 2019. The report shows success with the ongoing 'Living Streets walk to' projects with more children walking to school, new travel plans being developed because of major development sites and better walking and cycling infrastructure in the City. Part 2 is the second progress report published in October 2019 and looks forward to 2020/21 and beyond.

The Rights of Way Improvement Plan (ROWIP)

We have adopted the fourth Rights of Way Improvement Plan (ROWIP4) 'Loving our Local Landscapes'. The Plan sets out how we will invest in our public rights of way (PROW) network of footpaths, bridleways, and byways, by enhancing the existing green network for the benefit of those who use the PROW network: walkers, cyclists, horse riders, and some off-road motor vehicles. It is a 10 year plan and at its core has four strategic objectives and eight policies. A three year delivery plan has been developed to sit alongside the ROWIP.

The ROWIP and more information on rights of way can be found on our Rights of Way Improvement Plan page.

Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans and the Strategic Cycling and Walking Delivery Plan

Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans (LCWIPs) are an evidence-based strategic approach to identifying cycling and walking improvements to help and encourage active travel for every day journeys. LCWIPs provide a safe, convenient, and enjoyable way to travel short journeys rather than by using the private car. 11 LCWIPs have been adopted for 11 key towns in the county.

The Strategic Cycling and Walking Delivery Plan 2019-2029 sets out the key goals to help people experience the benefits of cycling and walking and aims for cycling and walking to be a central part of County Durham's culture. 

County Durham Parking Policies

The revised Policies (2016-2019) were approved and adopted by our cabinet in July 2016. It is intended that these policies will cover a three year period to the end of 2019. The purpose of the document is to set out the key policies for the provision of both on-street and off-street parking and for the civil parking operation. 

Icon for pdf Parking Policy 2016 - 2019 (PDF, 9.2mb)

County Durham's Electric Vehicle Chargepoint Delivery Plan

We are working to ensure that enough chargepoints are available in County Durham in preparation for an uptake of more people driving electric cars and vans. We have prepared a Chargepoint Delivery Plan for increasing the number of chargepoints in County Durham.

Transport Asset Management Plan (TAMP) and Highways Maintenance Management Plan (HMP)

Local councils are required to demonstrate that they are making best use of their property and other assets through asset management plans. The preparation of a TAMP for transport-related assets, including roads has being carried out. The processes behind how we fulfil this responsibility are fully detailed in our HMP. The latest versions of both these documents can be found on our How we look after our roads page.

Speed Management Strategy

Speed management is a shared responsibility between us and the Police. Our Strategy sets out how speed limits are determined for public roads. It explains how we manage appropriate speed limits across the county and address speeding issues in partnership with local communities and the police.

Icon for pdf Speed Management Strategy (PDF, 806.6kb)

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