Active legacy

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The damage to our health from car pollution in our towns and cities is truly shocking as your editorial and article indicates (your report, 11 April). This situation demands policy and personal responses of a substantial nature, culminating in far less people using the motor car in the urban environment and making much more use of public transport, cycling and walking.

Fortunately for Scotland, we are perhaps on the brink of the essential transformation that is needed. In a few weeks, we are expecting the Scottish Government to launch its national walking strategy as part of the efforts to deliver long-lasting physical activity legacy benefits from the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games. This, combined with the ongoing national cycling strategy, must deliver radical change to the way in which we move around our urban areas.

For Glasgow, the challenge is simple: within ten years we must alter the road infrastructure so that the majority of movement within the city is by walking, cycling or public transport, not by car. If this can be achieved in other European cities why not Glasgow?

We are not trying to fly to the Moon, we are simply asking to move about our surroundings without being dominated by the needs of the motor car. 

When you park your bicycle in Amsterdam, Copenhagen or Oslo by the bus or rail stations, or local school, hundreds of other bicycles parked there. The rest of Europe is walking and cycling, so why not us?

We need an explosion in political thinking and action, so that everyone is committed to walking and cycling.

Dave Morris

Director

Ramblers Scotland

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