Better transport links and community design can help reduce child poverty

Bristol transport coverWe all know that where we live, affects how we live. Humans tend to be creatures of habit and looking for the easier way. So if we live in a built up area, wide open spaces can seem like a million miles away and we never venture from the concrete jungle, and for some people in the outskirts of a city they may never actually travel to the city centre.

So obviously how our towns and cities are designed impacts how we access schools, work and leisure. Therefore, there is a need to enable an individual to improve their life and that of their family with journeys to services that are not hard work, off putting or financially difficult to meet through high cost, time consuming public transport or heavy commutes.

In a collaborative approach “A-Good-Transport-Plan-for-Bristol-2016-PDF” has been launched with an aim to show how getting around Bristol could be cleaner, cheaper and more efficient over the next five to ten years.

Bristol transport objectives

The plan recognises that the current city structure and use doesn’t work for everyone and the document sets out nine objectives to help make the necessary changes to make the city more resilient, sustainable and accessible.

Birmingham, as a city can use Bristol’s transport plan to remind itself and its partners, that there is a need to maintain and retain its focus on transportation, community design and structures and its importance on improving the quality of life for our citizens.

These changes for example can mean that our young people have access to safe, clean open spaces near where they live, instead of unattractive concrete and rubbish littered play areas. And parents have access to good affordable regular public transport, instead of one bus that touches the outskirts of a housing estate every 30 minutes which doesn’t run on time.

There is no quick fix, as change on this scale has to take into account current established settings, other public priorities and of course budgets. Each step though, can go to making a positive impact on the lives and experiences of our children and their families, reducing child poverty and removing the likelihood of future generations living in the same conditions.

Everyone should play their part to make child poverty unacceptable across the city. Anyone who lives or works in Birmingham and wants to share their views can contact email: childpovertycommission@birmingham.gov.uk or Twitter @fairbrum

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