Birmingham Connected bulletin - 5 May 2020

Covid-19 impact on transport, household recycling centres reopening and news about cycling and walking.

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Responding to Covid-19 impact on transport

Since the UK's lockdown began, we have seen less traffic on the roads and more people walking and cycling in their local areas. We are continuing to monitor this and planning for more changes to travel patterns when lockdown is eased.

To help with planning, Transport for West Midlands have launched an online survey asking about your travel habits and how you think they might change - complete it and you could win a £50 Amazon voucher. Please have your say before Monday 11 May 2020.

Councillor Zaffar, Cabinet Member for Transport and Environment has written a blog post on the transport impacts of Covid-19 and our work with stakeholders to consider where we could use space differently, for example turning parking space into space for people queuing or walking past.


Household waste & recycling centres to reopen

Four of the city’s network of five Household waste & recycling centres will re-open on Thursday 7 May, with limited opening hours. The sites and nearby roads are expected to be very busy, so residents are advised to only make a visit if it is absolutely essential.

The opening hours at sites in Kings Norton, Perry Barr, Sutton Coldfield and Tyseley will only be open:

  • Monday to Friday: 11am to 8pm
  • Saturday and Sunday: 8am to 2.30pm

There will be changes to the centres' normal operation, including restrictions on vehicle type and number of people attending, so please read full details online before setting out.

Bulky waste collections can also now be booked online.


Staying safe for essential travel

Please continue to stay at home and only make essential trips.

Public transport is running to revised timetables. Please keep your distance when queuing, boarding and choosing where to sit. If possible, use mobile, smartcard or contactless payments.

If you have to drive, take extra care to drive safely and reduce the strain on our emergency services:

  • Always drive at an appropriate speed
  • Always wear a seatbelt
  • Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Never use a mobile phone behind the wheel

And remember that staying active is important for your mental and physical health, so keep walking and cycling for short trips and exercise.

For the latest information on Birmingham City Council's response to Coronavirus (COVID-19), please visit the webpages at birmingham.gov.uk/coronavirus_advice. The Council is also sending weekly email updates, subscribe here.


Bikes for key workers

Lots of organisations are offering support to help key workers start or continue cycling. Sustrans have created an interactive map to help you find your nearest service and have a list of all the organisations involved.

As part of their Big Bike Revival, Cycling UK have partnered with local bike shops and cycling clubs, with six cycle centres in Birmingham offering free services, including:

  • Bike safety checks
  • Bike servicing and repairs
  • Bike and equipment loans
  • Dr Bike sessions
  • Free equipment
  • Support and advice

And Brompton are offering NHS staff free use of Brompton Bike Hire and longer loans (not limited to Brompton bikes) via Wheels for Heroes.


Cycle Smart Brum - get involved

RoSPA and See.Sense have come together to deliver an innovative cycle project which aims to identify cycling conditions across Birmingham and to gain a wider understanding of unreported collisions.

They are hoping to recruit up to 200 cyclists who regularly ride in Birmingham to help with their research. This involves using a special smart light on your bike, which records data about your journey and uses an app on your phone to submit it.

Find out more on the RoSPA website.


Living Streets walking challenge

May is National Walking Month and Living Streets want to keep everyone walking with a virtual walking challenge. Challenge your staff or colleagues to complete all 20 items on the checklist and use #WalkingFromHome to share your experience on social media.


Become a Brum Breathes Clean Air Champion

Sustrans have been working hard to recruit volunteer Brum Breathes Champions, people who will work with their community to share ideas about improving our air quality.

There is still time for you to get involved, and receive free training via a series of webinars in May:

  • Introduction to air quality
  • Social media tips
  • Introduction to air quality monitors

To get involved, please email brumbreathes@sustrans.org.uk.


Have your say

Travel after Covid-19 - survey closes 11 May

East Birmingham Inclusive Growth Strategy – consultation ends 11 May

Future of transport regulatory review – Department for Transport call for evidence ends 22 May


Dates for the diary

13 May - Clean Air Cops teacher training session (online)

22 May - Car Free School Streets application deadline (extended)

10 July - Young Active Travel grant application deadline (extended)

Article posted on 5 May 2020.

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