“Using TRACC has allowed us to get much more accurate results; we can put in the whole of our regional bus, rail and road networks, and now we can put in urban paths as well to show walking routes”
Joanne Keay, Strategy Officer, Staffordshire County Council
Staffordshire County Council produce accessibility appraisals to support their district councils in delivering housing and employment development in the most sustainable areas. They provide evidence in local long term planning documents by demonstrating travel time to services by walking, cycling and public transport. They have been using TRACC to calculate accessibility for public transport and travel time analysis.
Tamworth and Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Councils required transport advice for proposals of developments in urban and rural locations where residents could make use of existing services and facilities to maximise travel choice and minimise additional travel by car. They also wanted to show that these developments were strategically places for access to employment centres.
Staffordshire County Council used TRACC to create visual representations which showed that the proposed locations offered the best transport options to local services (doctors, schools, supermarkets, hospitals) as well as employment areas. The flexibility offered by TRACC enabled them to review travel times across both urban and rural areas.
By using TRACC, Staffordshire can scope exactly what changes need to be made to travel so stakeholders can review the evidence in the accessibility appraisal and agree to the proposals. Joanne Keay, Strategy Officer for Staffordshire County Council explains, “TRACC provides a robust evidence base and allows us to test potential public transport improvements by adding new bus stops and services so we know the level of benefit that can be achieved”.
Joanne recognises, “without TRACC, and its predecessor Accession, manually undertaking accessibility appraisals would take too long and require large staff resources. Since using TRACC, the software has got a lot faster and now we are running through very large calculations really quickly”.