New professional guidance on shared space schemes due in summer 2016 is set to establish three broad types of public realm arrangement. (Transport Network)
In an initiative led by the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT), 14 shared space case studies are being used to form the basis for the guidance.
All stakeholders involved in the project – including the DfT, Institute of Highways Engineers and the National Federation of the Blind – have met with the transport minister Andrew Jones.
The three types of shared space schemes established by the guidance are:
- Unstructured streets: where there is no or little definition of where in the space a pedestrian, cyclist or motor vehicle might be expected to be.
- Less managed street: where there are parts of the space, at junctions for instance, with generally clear areas for different types of user but the interaction between them is less managed than on a conventional street, so typically no traffic signals or priority crossings.
- Enhanced street: where traffic management is generally conventional in the way it operates.
Initial research found that the rate at which drivers give way to pedestrians varied significantly across the three types of public realm from 12% up to 97%, with many more drivers giving way when there are clear crossing areas.
The CIHT panel working on the guidance told Transport Network they would stop short of stating such crossings should always be in place.
Instead, the guidance is likely to address potential outcomes – including better quality place, ease of movement, improved safety and public health, and economic benefits – to the different public realms.
Phil Jones, managing director of Phil Jones Associates, who is working with the CIHT on the guidance, told the Transport Network: “We have agreed a structure for the document and identified 14 case studies, although it’s possible not all will make it into the final guidance. We will then collate the lessons learned and are aiming for publication some time this summer.”
The Transport Network report also suggests that the study could develop and possibly update the DfT’s previous Local transport note: Shared space (1/11) released in December 2011.