We've had a great response to our Vision 2050 competition, with a wide variety of quality submissions from the new generation of transport professionals.
The competition, which is being sponsored by Local Transport Today, encouraged a fresh perspective on the future of the region's transport system by asking students, graduates, apprentices and others new to the sector to submit their vision for improved connectivity.
Selecting just six entries to go before a judging panel in February was a tough ask. However, we believe the six we've shortlisted all demonstrate a compelling vision to innovate and change the way we plan and deliver connectivity – essential if we're going to support growth in a way which improves quality of life and wellbeing, protects and enhances the built and natural environment, and decarbonises the transport system.
The six finalists will all have their visions reproduced in full in a Local Transport Today supplement in the spring.
Ryan Cogan, Graduate Transport Planner, WSP: "The future transport strategy for regions such as England's Economic Heartland are key to changing the perception and control that individuals, especially young people, have on time and how that time is spent when engaging with transport systems. In particular, well planned public transport can utilise time and challenge the restrictions associated with the private car by providing an environment in which journey time is increasingly transparent, controllable, understandable and can be used more efficiently or leisurely."
Ryan Curtis, Graduate Transport Planner, Ringway Jacobs: "ElectroSmart Cities will revolutionise and digitalise the future of the transportation industry, through the use of electric autonomous vehicles and interconnecting infrastructure. It will improve connectivity, flexibility and resilience while achieving carbon neutrality."
Emily Seabrook, Graduate Civil Engineer, Skanska: "My vision would take an holistic approach; focusing on better access and connectivity throughout the region, maximising and complementing the existing network. Designed around real people and everyday journeys for both commuters and freight, supported by new infrastructure and technology."
Monty Harr, Solutions Engineer, Immense Simulations: "Exposing gender data bias in the planning of transport systems: How do we move forward?"
Alex Dawn, Transport Modelling Consultant, City Science: "A broad vision of the future based on current trends and evidence in technology, policy, modal change, sea-level rise and placemaking. This vision demonstrates a potential future with the radical change required to transport and land-use that is required at a minimum to meet the goals set by both the EEH region, and central government."
Deborah Keary, Graduate Transport Planner, WSP: "Transport has the ability to redefine an area, creating spaces where societies, economies and the environment can thrive together. I believe an East – West railway line through England's Economic Heartland provides an opportunity to reinvent weakening towns and societies, while also creating prosperous new ones."
The finalists will present their visions to our renowned judging panel in February. The winner will have their vision brought to life by spatial design agency 5th Studio and have the opportunity to address our annual conference in the summer.
The judging panel consists of:
• Professor Sadie Morgan OBE, co-founding director at RIBA Stirling Prize winning dRMM Architects, who is a commissioner for the National Infrastructure Commission, board member for Homes England and a London Mayor's Design Advocate, and who was recently named 'Female Architectural Leader of the Year' at the BD Architect of the Year awards.
• Professor Paul Leinster CBE, former chief executive of the Environment Agency and currently Professor of Environmental Assessment at Cranfield University, chair of the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment and member of the Government's Natural Capital Committee
• Lynda Addison OBE, immediate past chair of the Transport Planning Society, adviser to the Campaign for Better Transport and chair of the Sustainable Transport Panel of CIHT
• Peter Stonham, founder of Landor LINKS, which publishes Local Transport Today, and who has written about transport in a range of publications for more than 30 years.
• Lucy Ellis, apprentice at the East West Rail Alliance, who was shortlisted as an Apprentice & Graduate of the Year 2018 by Women in Rail.