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Reflecting upon mobilities during COVID-19 in order to imagine and inform future mobilities

About this Event

The Covid-19 pandemic has brought about substantial changes to the way we live. Shifts in how we work, shop and socialise have impacted upon mobility practices. Periods of lockdown have seen reductions in motorised traffic and increases in walking and cycling as people take outdoor exercise and visit greenspaces. There has been evidence of improved air quality as a result. We’ve seen pop up cycle infrastructure being introduced to encourage cycling and enable people to socially distance, as well as an increase in pedal-powered vehicles for deliveries. Restrictions and concerns over safety on crowded services have been challenging for public transport providers, who have seen revenues fall. International travel has been limited and complicated by concerns about infection and shifting expectations relating to quarantining on return.

As vaccines are rolled out and society returns to some event degree of normality, there are numerous questions pertaining to travel and transport. Will those who have been cycling and walking more for exercise during periods of lockdown continue to do this and maybe build these modes into their regular journeys? Will the temporary infrastructure created during the pandemic become a mainstay of our active cities? Will public transport be able to recover financially and will people be comfortable going back to crowded spaces? Will concern about infection mean that car use will increase? Will we take the opportunity to develop a transport system that facilitates exercise and minimises pollution or we will return to an epidemic of inactivity and dirty air?


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