Efficient goods distribution (Brighton and Hove)
Brighton & Hove aimed to establish a Freight Quality Partnership in the city to optimise the effectiveness and efficiency of freight movements in the city.
Implementing sustainable mobility
The work carried out within the measure comprised four tasks:
- Provide a review and elaboration of Freight Quality Partnership (FQP) activity, taking into account best practice from European and United Kingdom cities.
- Perform surveys with businesses and freight carriers located within four distinct areas of central Brighton.
- Initiate an agenda to form either a formal or informal Freight Quality Partnership.
- Implement a hard measure, comprising of a part-pedestrianisation in the East Street area of Brighton to reduce the impact of freight.
- Evaluation focussed on surveys of local businesses and before and after counts of traffic, pedestrians and air quality.
- The measure resulted in a significant reduction in traffic, including freight. Light goods vehicle numbers reduced by 13%, heavy goods vehicles by 6% and traffic in general by 42%.
- Weekday pedestrian numbers increased by 66% and at weekends increased by 24%.
- Satisfaction levels amongst local business increased by 7%.
- Air quality improved slightly but not by a significant amount.
This measure could be taken up in other cities where city centre freight is an issue. The principle of amending the road network to reduce traffic whilst implementing a freight partnership, is transferable, although the individual road layout of each city will dictate how applicable it will be.
The measure showed that freight levels can be reduced through a measure of this type. The hard measure was more successful than the Freight Quality Partnership and to achieve even greater results a more effective method for engaging with freight operators could be used.
To successfully initiate a Freight Quality Partnership it is necessary to have an incentive to offer the freight operators. In this measure the initial engagement with operators was unsuccessful as there was only the promise of a forum for discussion, not the opportunity to make improvements.
Dialogue with stakeholders is essential. The East Street part-pedestrianisation scheme was successful in reducing freight movements. However its acceptance by local businesses only occurred due to prolonged dialogue with them and many amendments to the scheme to ensure that it worked for all.