Cycling and Walking

Cycling and walking are sustainable and enjoyable modes of transport. They can replace motorised transport for many shorter journeys.

With approximately 34% of all car journeys in Scotland being less than two miles in length, there are huge potential benefits in promoting walking and cycling as realistic alternatives. Such distances can be covered by bicycle within 10-15 minutes, or by brisk walking within 30-50 minutes. Over short distances - especially in urban areas - cycling is often quicker and cheaper than using a car and more flexible than public transport.

The benefits of more people cycling and walking include:

  • easing congestion
  • reducing noise pollution
  • cutting exhaust emissions
  • improving health
  • giving us more time to enjoy our urban spaces
  • saving money

For businesses and other organisations, developing a cycling and walking culture can help:

  • lower organisational transport costs
  • reduce the need for expensive car parking spaces
  • increase productivity through improved staff well-being
  • demonstrate a commitment to protecting the environment
  • meet criteria for accreditation schemes such as the Healthy Working Lives Award and the Cycle Friendly Employer Award.

Transport Scotland has helped deliver a number of new cycle routes and has produced design guidance for cycle routes.

The Cycling Action Plan for Scotland

Stewart Stevenson MSP launched the Cycling Action Plan for Scotland (CAPS) on 25 June 2010. The overall vision for cycling is that “by 2020, 10 percent of all journeys taken in Scotland will be by bike”. Although this is an ambitious vision, we believe it is achievable. The document outlines the Scottish Government’s and Transport Scotland’s commitment to delivering the 17 actions in CAPS and to working in partnership with key delivery agencies, including local authorities, Sustrans and Cycling Scotland.

The updated Cycling Action Plan 2013 for Scotland has now been published.Based on recommendations from the Cycling Scotland Progress Report on CAPS ( November 2012), this updated document aims to be as up-to-date and effective as possible. The document draws on the experience of delivery since 2010 and takes account of the contributions received from stakeholders during the refresh exercise in 2013

The Cycling Action Plan for Scotland 2010 can be viewed on the Scottish Government Website.