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Green groups call for congestion quick fix

NEWS

GREEN GROUPS have urged the Government to stop worrying about motorists and act to cut congestion in an 'agenda for action' published this week.

The document, Getting out of neutral, recommends a series of 'quick wins' and 'big hits' to improve Britain's transport system.

The plan has been produced by a partnership of nine environmental and road safety organisations. It warns that transport is becoming the Government's 'Achilles' heel'.

'The Government is aware that the chaotic status quo cannot continue,' says the report. 'Yet for fear of offending motorists, it is in danger of doing nothing.'

Proposed quick fixes include better road maintenance and co-ordination of road works, more effective cycle lanes and widespread cycle parking and a 32km/h speed limit in cities, towns and villages.

Longer term action includes providing rail lines or rail-bus links to areas with more than 20,000 people, ensuring all new developments can be reached by public transport, bicycle or by foot, and building more rail freight terminals and freight only lines.

The document was due to be launched directly after Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott's speech at the Labour Party Conference on Wednesday.

A spokesman for Transport 2000 - one of the organisations responsible for the document - said: 'This is intended to be a work list for Prescott for the next six months. If he follows it he will answer his critics.'

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