Minister tells London drivers to walk to work during Olympics
Speaking today (3 August) Baker urged drivers to consider new measures, such as cycling or walking to work for those who only have short distances to travel. Those who live further away are being encouraged to try different routes; stagger their journey times to avoid the busiest periods; work remotely; or use video conferencing for meetings.
Baker was speaking at BT where he was shown new ways for businesses and individuals to work remotely from both home and the office. He said: ‘The Games will be a once-in-a-generation test for both our transport system and our adaptability. As we edge ever closer to the Olympics, hand-in-hand with new investment must go new solutions.
‘I am the first ever transport minister to have official responsibility for alternatives to travel and the Olympics will be a key time to really embrace these ideas. It’s time to oil the creaking bike, dig out the walking boots, work out how to use the video conferencing equipment, and fire up the laptop gathering dust at the back of the cupboard.’
He explained that the DfT has committed to reduce the travel footprint of the department by 50% during the Games. DfT staff will reduce commuting, keep business travel to a minimum, and rearrange deliveries and collections where possible. He added that the department is testing out different ways of working and travelling in a trial week from 8 to 12 August 2011 and has a wider programme of work with business representatives to develop a strategy on alternatives that will reduce the need for commuting and business trips, not just for the Olympics but for the longer term.