We want all London Boroughs to implement five key measures

These measures will dramatically improve air quality and road safety, boost active lifestyles and reduce carbon emissions – often literally overnight:

  • 1. Borough-wide low traffic neighbourhoods
  • 2. A default 20mph speed limit on all borough and Transport for London controlled roads
  • 3. Borough-wide controlled parking
  • 4. Protected cycle lanes on main roads
  • 5. Traffic-free streets around all schools and safe walking and cycling routes to school

The London Boroughs Healthy Streets Scorecard shows to what extent London Boroughs are putting in place these five key measures – what we call ‘input’ indicators. It also sets out data to show the health of each borough’s streets – what we call ‘outcome’ indicators. By combining the scores for the nine indicators we give each borough a final Healthy Streets score.

How healthy are your borough's streets?

The Healthy Streets Scorecard sets out data to show the health of each borough’s streets according to nine indicators. We hope it helps councils and residents compare how well their borough is doing in relation to others and identify areas for action.

Covid-19 emergency response

The 2020 Scorecard data reflects the health of boroughs’ streets in the year before boroughs started to put in place emergency measures in response to the Covid-19 crisis so it does not reflect the incredibly hard work which has gone in during 2020 to enable more walking and cycling. We will need to wait for the results of the 2021 Scorecard to reflect on the outcomes of all this work. See our blog posts Covid-19 and Healthy Streets and Lockdown street changes for more.

2020 Healthy Streets Scorecard

Even though we have not been able to incorporate the emergency Covid-19 measures being put in place by boroughs, we hope the 2020 Scorecard helps boroughs compare how well they are doing in relation to other boroughs and identify areas for future action. The organisations in the London Boroughs Healthy Streets Scorecard Coalition, as well as the local groups we are associated with, are committed to supporting councils to implement the measures.

We use publicly-available data that can be collected annually to enable us to update the Scorecard and track boroughs’ progress. 2020 is the second year we have published the Scorecard but it is the first year we are able to show progress from the previous year.

To see this year’s detailed scores and commentary, visit the Results pages.

Planning a healthy London

For our health, London desperately needs to increase the number of trips being taken by public transport, walking or cycling. The way we plan transport in London has an enormous impact on the health of all Londoners:

Air
pollution

Around half of London’s air pollution is caused by road transport. Toxic fumes and particulates from vehicles cause thousands of premature deaths every year and lead to young Londoners growing up with stunted lungs and suffering from asthma.

Inactive lifestyles

Adults need just 20 minutes of moderate activity every day to stay physically and mentally healthy. Yet only 34% of adult Londoners are achieving this. This is partly because nearly 5 million daily journeys in London that could be walked or cycled are currently made by car.

Noise pollution

Traffic is a major source of noise pollution in London. Environmental noise is the second largest environmental health risk in Western Europe behind poor air quality.

Road casualties

In 2018, 4,065 people were killed or seriously injured on London’s roads (up 5% from 2017), including 112 fatalities. A further 26,526 people sustained what were classified as ‘slight’ injuries.

Carbon

Nearly 95% of the London's population live in areas that exceed the World Health Organization (WHO) guideline limit of fine particulate matter by 50% or more. London's CO2e emissions were 31.36 million tonnes in 2016 (latest year with full results) with transport the worst-performing sector for carbon emissions.

More detail on the link between inactive lifestyles and transport, as well as on road casualties, is set out in the discussion of the Scorecard Indicators.

London Transport Strategy

The Mayor’s Transport Strategy sets targets to deliver ‘healthy streets’.
Transport for London and the Mayor of London’s Healthy Streets Approach acknowledges research that shows if streets are safe and comfortable to walk, cycle and use public transport on, if they feature less car use and are greener, they result in better health outcomes. The Mayor’s Transport Strategy has three key targets.

1.    To increase the trips made by ‘sustainable mode of transport’ (walking, cycling, public transport) from 63% to 80% by 2041

2.    For everyone to undertake the daily 20 minutes of active travel they need to stay healthy by 2041

3.    Vision Zero for road danger: the elimination of all deaths and serious injuries on London’s transport system by 2041

The Scorecard

London’s boroughs control 95% of London’s roads so the measures they implement are critical to whether the Mayor’s targets will be met or not. But what specific measures should boroughs be taking? Are they doing all they can? Have they succeeded in implementing new measures since last year?

The London Boroughs Healthy Streets Scorecard was launched in July 2019 and reflects key Mayoral Transport Strategy targets and interventions, and sets out data to show:

(A) the health of each borough’s streets through ‘outcome’ indicators.
The outcome indicators compare modeshare, active travel rates, casualties and vehicle ownership, so borough officials and residents can assess success in getting people out of cars and onto public transport, walking and cycling.

(B) the extent to which councils are putting in place five key measures which can make a real difference.
The input indicators identify how much progress boroughs have made implementing 20mph, modal filtering, controlled parking, protected cycle track and provision for schools.

(A) Outcome indicators

The Scorecard shows the health of each borough’s streets by looking at four key ‘outcome’ indicators:

1.   the proportion of trips made by ‘sustainable modes’ (walking, cycling, public transport)
2.   active travel rate (the proportion of residents walking or cycling more than five times a week)
3.   collisions resulting in serious or fatal injuries for active travellers, per million journey stages
4.   car ownership rates, to ascertain the level of reliance on cars.

(B) Input indicators

The Scorecard also shows to what extent councils are putting in place five key measures (or ‘input’ indicators) which can help to deliver Healthy Streets, often with dramatic results:

5.   low traffic neighbourhood schemes
6.   20mph speed limits
7.   Controlled Parking Zones (CPZs)
8.   physically protected cycle track
9.   school provision, including School Streets and STARS scheme

The five key input indicators have been chosen because they can have a big impact, and because it is realistic to expect all boroughs to be able to implement them. They are not currently being used routinely by London Boroughs so there is a huge opportunity to achieve dramatic results in a short space of time.

The organisations in the London Boroughs Healthy Streets Scorecard Coalition, and the local groups we are associated with, are committed to supporting councils to implement the key measures.

It is recognised that not everything is under boroughs’ control, most notably public transport, and that boroughs face financial constraints. It is also recognised that residents are often concerned that the proposed measures might make their lives harder rather than easier. Part of our job in supporting councils to implement these measures is to demonstrate more clearly to the public why they will be healthier and better off with the measures in place.

We hope the scorecard helps boroughs to compare how well they are doing in relation to other boroughs and to identify areas for future action. As London is only just beginning the ‘HealthyStreets’ journey, our aim is to provide a benchmark or baseline for future action. It in no way seeks to criticise previous approaches.

Who we are

Photo by Simon Turner Photography

The London Boroughs Healthy Streets Scorecard, inaugurated in 2019, aims to promote action to put people’s health and wellbeing at the forefront of a borough’s transport planning.

A coalition of environment and transport NGOs has come together to help councils and residents understand better where and how they can make an impact.

Our aim is to update the scorecard annually to track progress and change. We also want to promote this approach beyond London to other cities and towns across the country.

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