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Transport planner: Job description

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Transport planners work on policies, plans and projects relating to all kinds of transport systems. This includes roads and the use of cars, lorries and buses, rail networks, pedestrian systems for walking or cycling, and air travel.

Transport planners look at ways to improve these systems or how new systems can be implemented in certain areas. They will take into consideration issues such as climate change, the economy and the environment. The work of transport planners is often related to government policies and initiatives, such as trying to change the travel behaviour of people by encouraging them to reduce their car use and take up walking, cycling or public transport.

Work can be carried out on different levels from local to international and may include tasks from initial ideas through to design, completion and reviews. 

Typical work activities

Work activities are varied and often depend on the level of the job and the size and type of the employer. However, tasks typically include:

  • designing and interpreting transport and travel surveys;
  • writing clear reports and presenting options and recommendations on transport systems to clients;
  • using statistical analysis to examine travel data or accident records;
  • forming potential solutions to transport problems;
  • using mathematical and computer simulation models to forecast the effects of road improvements, policy changes and/or public transport schemes;
  • evaluating the benefits and costs of different strategies;
  • participating in public consultation initiatives, including designing leaflets or questionnaires and attending scheme exhibitions;
  • managing studies and projects, often within tight time and budget limits;
  • assessing infrastructure requirements (access, car parking, bus stops, cycle parking, etc) of new developments to support planning applications or to inform local authority development plans;
  • liaising and negotiating with different parties, e.g. planning and highways authorities, residents' groups, councillors/politicians, developers, transport providers;
  • developing the initial design ideas for new or improved transport infrastructure, such as junction improvements, pedestrian priority schemes, bus interchange or bus priority facilities, car parking areas, etc;
  • acting as an expert witness at public inquiries and planning appeals;
  • writing bids for the funding of projects.

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AGCAS
Written by AGCAS editors
Date: 
November 2013
 

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