The Freight Transport Association is today (5 November) launching Delivering London, its manifesto for freight operations in London. The manifesto sets out the key actions required by decision makers in the capital in order to maintain and grow London's status as a world leading city.
Failure to deal with current problems could lead to a point where London's businesses and residents can no longer receive their daily essentials because of the costs, regulation and bureaucracy being heaped onto industry.
Delivering London identifies the business-critical issues facing London operators and their customers. Some of these, such as the London Lorry Control Scheme, are decades-old regimes that have no place in a 24/7 economy – others, such as the congestion charge, are systems that failed to properly understand the importance of freight when they were set up.
Whilst the picture looks bleak, none of the issues set out in the manifesto is beyond repair – FTA's engagement with partners has already yielded fruit in terms of extended kerbside loading times, and lobbying for Low Emission Certificates for the Low Emission Zone has already saved industry over £8 million in compliance costs.
Gordon Telling, FTA's Head of Policy for London said, 'London freight operators are reeling under the burden of the Congestion Charge, Penalty Charge Notices, bus lanes, Red Routes and the London Lorry Control Scheme, with the extra weight of the London Low Emission Zone being added on in the spring.
'FTA's manifesto throws down the gauntlet to Transport for London, London Councils and the London Boroughs to harness the innovation and commitment of industry to improve road safety, reduce congestion and minimise the carbon footprint of London's economy.
'FTA has worked hard through its recent Urban Freight Summit and its increasing engagement with public sector partners to promote a better understanding of freight issues in London. We have already seen real improvements in some quarters but there remains a lot of work to be done.'
A copy of Delivering London can be obtained from the FTA website www.fta.co.uk or by calling Jackie Langridge in the FTA press office on 01892 552253.
FTA's manifesto for London – Delivering London – is being launched at the RICS in Central London this evening with contributions from Andrew Haines, FTA's President and David Brown, Managing Director of Surface Transport at Transport for London.
Delivering London is one part of the package of measures being put in place to improve the understanding of the functions and importance of freight in London.