Exeter City has proposed a number of post-COVID pandemic recovery measures. The measures are geared towards rejuvenating the economy and restoring normalcy in the vibrant city centre after the devastating effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
The main focus of the authority in Exeter is to open the city centre for business. Therefore, they have concentrated on the transport sector within the city.
On Wednesday, a roundtable meeting was held in Exeter to discuss some of the proposed recovery measures. The meeting was hosted by City Futures, and it brought together various participants who represented the business community, individuals, and local authorities.
The agenda of the meeting was to discuss and come up with recovery measures that will guarantee a “green restart.” The organizers insisted that a “green restart” is the only viable solution that will guarantee a safe recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.
The participants proposed that the city center should be pedestrianized and the road space reallocated. They also proposed the introduction of congestion charges to discourage traffic congestion in the city center.
During the lockdown period, carbon emissions in Devon county reduced by 20 percent. Additionally, traffic flows in the county reduced significantly.
The CEO of Devon County Council, Dr. Phil Norrey said that the lockdown has shown how Exeter and the entire Devon can sound, feel, and look with minimal emissions.
One hundred participants attended the roundtable meeting. They all agreed that there is a need for the council to take bold actions towards achieving the “green restart” recovery plan.
The participants proposed a number of recovery measures, including the closure of arterial routes leading into the city, regressive measures such as parking levies at workplaces, and the introduction of “quick wins” like cutting vegetation to discourage the use of bikes.
Reallocation of road spaces was also proposed, as it would give cyclists and pedestrians a greater priority.