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Transport strategy

Transport strategy

A transport strategy for a more connected, productive and sustainable South East

This strategy is an important waypoint on a longer journey, culminating in the publication of our strategic investment plan for the South East in 2022. This will set out, for the very first time, a prioritised programme of investment for our area, created by those who know it best.

The building blocks of the strategic investment plan will come from a series of area studies. These will see us working with partners at a local level to understand the specific schemes and initiatives which will help us deliver our vision. We’ll also feed in the results of two key thematic studies – covering future mobility and freight & logistics – to build a comprehensive, effective and futureproof investment plan.

The bold, future-focussed transport strategy we need

In the past, transport strategies were devised on a “predict and provide” basis. Planners made forecasts about future transport demand based on past trends, with investment focused on expanding existing transport systems.

We’re taking a different approach. By deciding on the future we want for our region, we’ll be able to plan a transport system that helps make it happen – putting people and places, not vehicles, at the heart of what we do.

183 billion Gross Value Added (GVA)
474,000 Jobs created
7.6 million People

Our vision for the South East in 2050

By 2050, the South East of England will be a leading global region for net-zero carbon, sustainable economic growth where integrated transport, digital and energy networks have delivered a step change in connectivity and environmental quality.

A high-quality, reliable, safe and accessible transport network will offer seamless door-to-door journeys enabling our businesses to compete and trade more effectively in the global marketplace and giving our residents and visitors the highest quality of life.

Environmental priorities

  • Reducing carbon emission to net zero by 2050 at the latest.
  • Reducing the impact of, and the need to, travel.
  • Protecting our natural, built and historic environments.
  • Improving biodiversity.
  • Minimising resource and energy consumption.

Social priorities

  • Promoting active travel and healthier lifestyles.
  • Improving air quality.
  • An affordable, accessible transport network that’s simpler to use.
  • A more integrated transport network where it is easier to plan and pay for door-to-door journeys.
  • A safer transport network.

Economic priorities

  • Improving connectivity between major economic hubs, ports and airports.
  • More reliable journeys.
  • A more resilient network.
  • Better integrated land use and transport planning.
  • A digitally smart transport network.

Making our plan a reality

We want to become a statutory sub-national transport body – a truly empowered champion for the region, able to make the strongest case for transport investment. The powers and responsibilities we are seeking are essential to delivering our vision for the South East.

A bold vision for a brighter future

A 30-year transport strategy for the South East of England

We think that to achieve a flourishing economy you need a bold, future-focused transport strategy built around people and the places they live, work and do business. 

This is where the journey starts towards a brighter, more sustainable future for the South East.

Read our transport strategy ‘at a glance’
Read the full transport strategy

A full suite of supporting technical documents can be found here.

Understanding the impacts of Covid-19

Our vision for 2050 represents the future we want for our region. But we can’t ignore the unprecedented impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic on the economy and our day-to-day lives and what it could mean for our future investment priorities. That’s why, before embarking on our area studies, we carried out an important piece of work looking at a range of potential ‘unlocking’ scenarios and how they could affect employment, business activity and travel patterns here in the South East.

We talked to a number of our key partners to help get a detailed picture of how our region’s economy – and the millions of people who make it tick – might respond. The results of this work will allow us to test that the schemes and initiatives put forward in our area studies deliver the best outcomes for our region – helping us move towards that vision for 2050 while also supporting economic recovery in the South East and across the UK.