Dr Rachel Aldred, Reader in Transport, wrote an article on the Propensity to Cycle Tool (PCT), a national tool aimed at analysing data to assist transport planners and policy makers in prioritising investments to enable more cycling.

Portrait of Rachel Aldred

In her article, Dr Aldred mentioned a newly developed national tool funded by the Department for Transport, the Propensity to Cycle Tool (PCT), which she is currently working on alongside academics from the University of Cambridge, Leeds, LSHTM and Westminster. 

She explained: “This has created a free, open source online tool and associated data downloads, used across the country by planners and advocates. The PCT has given planners across England and Wales something radically new: estimates of how many cycle commuters there might be on parts of their route network, under different future scenarios. But one limitation of the PCT is that until recently, it's only covered travel to work.” 

Dr Aldred discussed how thanks to a recent extension of the PCT contract, the experts were able to add a new function to explore the potential for also increasing cycling to school. Commenting on the results, which show great potential for getting more children cycling, she said: “If we can create safer streets, then we might see thousands of young people cycling to school regularly. This would substantially increase the amount of physical activity pupils get, particularly for those at secondary school.”

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