Recent changes to government legislation now mean that local authorities must carry out increased engagement

Low-traffic neighbourhoods: six tips for councils consulting on LTNs


Posted By:

Matthew Ahluwalia

Senior Programme Officer

A man riding a bike in Walthan Forest

New legislation means local authorities must carry out a deeper, longer consultation before launching a low-traffic neighbourhoods or similar scheme. 

Recent changes to government legislation now mean that local authorities must carry out increased engagement, for longer periods of time and with more residents, before implementing a low traffic neighborhood or associated initiative.  

We explored the issue at the latest meeting of our London Local Authority Learning Hub, with presentations from councils and their partners. Here are six practical insights they shared.  

  1. Work with community groups to bolster your engagement. Collaborating with community groups, such as the London Clean Air Initiative, will save your authority money and enable more inclusive and trustworthy engagement. We’ve shared support and advice on how local authorities can work better with community groups. 
  2. Share an inspiring broader vision. Show residents that your intervention is part of a broader plan that is bringing a wealth of benefits to the area. This can help residents feel at ease with the changes to their street. 
  3. Give regular progress updates. Residents can lose faith if they are consulted about plans, but don’t see the impact of the work you’ve set out to do. Try to provide frequent updates to the community, highlighting the progress you’ve made. 
  4. Give residents a go-to place for answers to their questions. Create a hotline for the initiative, or individual email address, where residents can ask questions and share their concerns. Add an FAQ webpage to your website too.  
  5. Use data to tell a positive story. Statistics prove the positive impact of LTNs – including how they cut pollution and street crime, and boost health and economies. Sustrans offer a searchable collection of data covering these benefits and more. 
  6. Keep the faith – displaced traffic and bottlenecks will ease. In the few months after you launch an LTN, traffic may build up on nearby roads, as drivers take time to change their regular routes. Reassure residents that research shows this will ease over time. 


Thanks to of Croydon and Southwark councils, and sustainable travel experts Sustrans and London Clean Air Collective, for sharing their insights.  

Find out more our networks and resources for local authorities. 

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