The local authority network, CIVINET UK & Ireland, held their latest event in Bournemouth on 20th July 2012. Bournemouth Borough Council hosted the event and drew together their neighbouring authorities; Borough of Poole and Dorset County Council, along with the Department for Transport to share with an audience of transport professionals and politicians how their sustainable transport projects are contributing to the local economy.
The local authority network, CIVINET UK & Ireland, held their latest event in Bournemouth on 20th July 2012. Bournemouth Borough Council hosted the event and drew together their neighbouring authorities; Borough of Poole and Dorset County Council, along with the Department for Transport to share with an audience of transport professionals and politicians how their sustainable transport projects are contributing to the local economy. Councillor Michael Filer, Portfolio Holder, Transport, and Technical Services for Bournemouth Borough Council opened the CIVINET event and speaking of recent success securing significant levels of transport funding said, “Not only has Bournemouth enjoyed success in its own right but it has also achieved so much through working with our neighbouring authorities and other delivery partners. Partnership working is clearly the way forward” Collaborative working was a common theme of the day. A wide variety of presentations were provided ranging from “Sustainable travel to the Olympics” to “Cross Channel cycle tourism” and “Cutting costs and carbon through managing delivery and servicing” demonstrating the innovative sustainable transport projects being promoted in the area. Cumulatively, these transport projects driven forward by local authorities and partners from the wider community are supporting the economy whilst promoting low carbon travel options. The Borough of Poole provided an overview of a particularly successful bus initiative in the South East Dorset conurbation which has contributed towards increased bus patronage by up to 80 percent. This will be further enhanced through the implementation of the Better Bus Area and LSTF projects which will deliver a range of measures to including enhancements to the 'in-bus experience', such as, Wifi, comfortable seats, LED saloon lighting, audible next stop announcements etc. Further improvements include the provision of “next generation” Real Time Information with the option to deploy live travel information to mobile devices via Near Field Communication (NFC) and QR technology.Dorset County Council outlined their experience of accessing EU funding with their INTERREG cross channel cycle project and the benefits the project will have with regards to the promotion of sustainable tourism. This interesting talk also provided an insight of some of the lessons learned working on large EU projects.It is clearly a time of significant opportunity in Dorset to make a real difference with the sustainable transport offer in the area with funding having been won by each Local Authority from a number of sources including: the Local Sustainable Transport Fund, Better Bus Area Fund and the European Regional Development Fund’s and INTERREG initiative. The CIVINET UK & Ireland Network helps local authorities to network and share information about sustainable transport issues and keeps members up-to-date with funding calls. The CIVINET UK & Ireland local authority network also recognises outstanding performance of its members through the PRISM Award. The PRISM Award highlights the most ambitious and innovative schemes in the field of sustainable urban mobility in the UK and Ireland. The call for nominations for the PRISM Award 2012 is now open. For more information on the PRISM Award or the CIVINET UK & Ireland Network, please contact Alastair Byers on 0117 907 6520 or civinet-uk-ireland [at] civitas [dot] eu.