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What’s New


On this page, you will find the latest news from Transform Scotland, with the occasional contribution from some of our member groups.

Buses should be more central to Scottish transport policy

20 November 2017

Commenting on the KPMG report ‘Trends in Scottish bus patronage’ for CPT Scotland, Transform Scotland director Colin Howden said: “It is imperative for Scotland to have strong bus services to provide a compelling alternative to private car use. In urban areas, we need to see action for the strict enforcement of existing bus lanes, improved…

Proposed cuts to concessionary travel “perverse”

17 November 2017

Transform Scotland have responded to the Scottish Government’s ‘Consultation on Free Bus Travel for Older and Disabled People and Modern Apprentices’. Transform Scotland director Colin Howden said: “Whilst it is understandable that government wishes to contain future costs, the proposed approach is at the expense of some of the less well-off people in society. This…

New franchise on West Coast Main Line offers opportunities for Anglo-Scottish rail

13 November 2017

Transform Scotland has today issued a briefing on the new Partnership for the West Coast Main Line (WCML) and the subsequent introduction of HS2 services. The West Coast franchise renewal offers an ideal opportunity to develop more and faster services, prepare the way for HS2 services, as well as increasing the modal shift from car and…

Parliament’s environment committee hears Transform’s views on Air Quality

07 November 2017

Transform Scotland chair Phil Matthews today gave oral evidence to the Scottish Parliament’s Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee as part of its inquiry into air quality. As part of his evidence, Phil said: “I welcome the air quality strategy and the proposals on low-emission zones, but we believe that we could go further….

Parliament’s local government committee hears Transform’s views on City Deals

01 November 2017

Transform Scotland policy advisor Chris Day today gave oral evidence to the Scottish Parliament’s Local Government and Communities Committee as part of its inquiry into City Region Deals. As part of his evidence, Chris argued that the City Deals had not been sufficiently subject to scrutiny as to how they delivered for equalities and the…

Welcome steps on active travel, but much more to be done to meet targets

31 October 2017

Transform Scotland has issued a briefing ahead of today’s parliamentary debate on active travel in Scotland. The briefing welcomes the Scottish Government’s announcement of increased funding for walking and cycling from £39 million to £80 million from 2018/19. However, a number of serious issues are highlighted, including the failure to increase cycling rates. Currently only…

New campaign seeks public’s ideas to “transform transport in Scotland”

27 October 2017

Transform Scotland has today launched a new campaign, #Transform20, to hear the public’s ideas to transform transport in Scotland. #Transform20 welcomes members of the public and organisations to submit their best ideas to improve Scotland’s transport system and deliver sustainable, affordable, reliable transport for everyone. The twenty best ideas will be selected by an expert judging…

TRAC research shows Scotland is leading the way on electric vehicles

11 October 2017

Research published by WWF Scotland today shows that Scotland has world leading targets on phasing out the use of petrol and diesel cars. The research – carried out by Transform Scotland’s social enterprise research consultancy TRAC – put Scotland in the top six countries globally* for setting targets for the use of electric vehicles. The…

Transform Scotland Annual Report 2017

03 October 2017

We are pleased to publish our Annual Report for 2017. It’s been another exciting year, with new campaigns and research launched and our social enterprises going from strength to strength, as we continue to make the case for a sustainable transport system which works for everyone. There is still however much more work to be done. We…

Tom Hart’s transport notes, 1 July to 30 September 2017

30 September 2017

This commentary is from Tom Hart from Scottish Association for Public Transport, although they’re his own personal views.   MAIN NEW ISSUES UK government announces long delayed plans to improve air quality and health (and also reducing greenhouse gas emissions). This proposes a ban on sale of new diesel and petrol cars and vans by…

Glasgow Transport Summit presentation

27 September 2017

Transform Scotland director Colin Howden’s presentation to today’s Glasgow Transport Summit is now available. The Summit was hosted by Glasgow City Council’s transport convenor Cllr Anna Richardson and held in the Glasgow City Chambers.

Transport and Travel statistics: Scottish Budget must favour sustainable transport to reverse worrying declines

26 September 2017

Transport Scotland has today published new statistics which highlight worrying trends for sustainable modes of transport. ‘Transport and Travel in Scotland 2016′, compiled by the Office for National Statistics, shows a decline in people walking to work and using the bus, and an increase in journeys made by plane and car between 2015 and 2016. There were…

Time for public transport to take priority: Transform features in the Transport Times

25 September 2017

Our Communications and Public Affairs Officer Jamie Wylie has recently featured in the Transport Times, writing about the Queensferry Crossing and the need for greater priority for public transport between Edinburgh and Fife. “Whilst undoubtedly an amazing engineering feat, the bridge represents a worrying trend in Scottish transport of increasing priority for private cars ahead…

ADT and Climate Change Bills will show Government’s true intentions on transport and climate change

25 September 2017

Two important consultations which will determine Scotland’s action on climate change have recently come to a close. The Air Departure Tax Bill – which sets out proposals to cut aviation tax – and the Climate Change Bill – setting out proposals on long term carbon reduction targets – will both have a significant impact on…

Notice of Transform Scotland 2017 Annual General Meeting

14 September 2017

Dear Members I’m writing to give you notice of two events we’re holding this autumn: Thursday 26 October: Transform Scotland Annual General Meeting & Campaign Launch, Glasgow City Chambers, 18:30-20:15 * Wednesday 22 November: Transform Scotland 20th Anniversary Celebration, Edinburgh City Chambers, 18:30-20:30 (approx) For our AGM this year, we are grateful for the hospitality…

Low Emission Zones: A positive step, but support for Local Authorities is vital

06 September 2017

Yesterday’s Programme for Government revealed a welcome commitment to establish a Low Emission Zone (LEZ) in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee by 2020. This was today followed up with an announcement from Humza Yousaf MSP, Minister for Transport and the Islands, of a new consultation on LEZs. LEZs are one of the most effective tools…

Programme for Government: Welcome news for sustainable transport

05 September 2017

Commenting on the Scottish Government’s announcements in the Programme for Government, Transform Scotland Director Colin Howden said: “The Government’s commitment to double the active travel budget to £80 million from 2018/19 is very welcome. With strong leadership at the local level, and a commitment to continuing this investment over the coming years, this will help to develop quality…

Queensferry Crossing: Now time for public transport to take priority

30 August 2017

Commenting on the opening of the Queensferry Crossing, Colin Howden, Director of Transform Scotland, said: “The Government stated that an additional crossing was needed because of concerns over the structural integrity of the existing bridge. As part of the decision to go ahead with the Queensferry Crossing, there was a specific commitment that the Forth…

New research shows shift from air to rail has cut carbon in Scotland-London travel market

21 August 2017

Transform Scotland has today published its new report ‘A Green Journey to Growth’. The report looks at the carbon savings already achieved by shifting travel from air to rail between Central Scotland and London, and highlights the additional emissions that would be saved should rail continue its progress towards a 50% share of the travel…

Inequality in transport prices continues to increase

15 August 2017

Today it was revealed that rail fares are set to increase by as much as 3.6% from January 2018, continuing a trend of rising prices for rail passengers over many years. Price increases in Scotland will be lower than those in England and Wales due to a cap introduced by the Scottish Government. However, rail passengers – particularly…

Priority for private cars is major barrier to clean air: Evidence to the ECCLR Committee on air quality

09 August 2017

Transform Scotland has recently responded to the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee’s call for evidence on air quality in Scotland. Our response highlights the failings of the Scottish Government and Local Authorities to improve air quality. Despite positive messages from all levels of government on the need to improve air quality, this has to…

New urban speed limit would offer huge opportunities for safer, healthier streets

02 August 2017

Transform Scotland has today responded the Scottish Parliament’s consultation on the Proposed Restricted Roads (20mph Limit) (Scotland) Bill. The Bill, proposed by Mark Ruskell MSP, sets out proposals to implement a new default 20 mph speed limit in urban areas in Scotland. The benefits of 20 mph limits are clear: reduced casualties and injuries for pedestrians,…

Electrification of Shotts Line presents opportunities to transform the route

26 July 2017

Source: Network Rail media library Transform Scotland has prepared a briefing paper in response to the Network Rail proposals for closure of Breich Station in West Lothian. We argue that the electrification of the Shotts Line combined with new three-car trains offers the chance to truly transform the route and significantly boost patronage. Colin Howden,…

Transport prices should reflect true costs — Transform responds to NTS Call for Evidence

17 July 2017

Transform Scotland has recently responded to the National Transport Strategy Research & Evidence working group’s Call for Evidence. The response focused on the transport choices, modal split and demand. Chief among the issues raised was that transport choices reflect the price of transport, which is presenting a barrier to seeing a significant shift away from…

Tom Hart’s transport news, 1 April to 30 June 2017

30 June 2017

This commentary is from Tom Hart from Scottish Association for Public Transport, although they’re his own personal views.   MAIN NEW ISSUES Localised air quality and action to cut greenhouse gas reductions (despite opposition from President Trump) receive prominence as well as new policy on the need to cut damaging diesel emissions. Transport had a…