Please enable JavaScript in your browser to use this page.

Transport and Developments Supplementary Planning Document (SPD): closed consultation

Obligations and tools for developers and other built environment professionals

This Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) sets out guidance on a number of topics related to travel and transport. You will need to follow the guidelines in the SPD, together with the policies in the Local Plan Partial Update (LPPU), when submitting planning applications for major new developments and redevelopments.

Select a topic below to read in more detail about the approach we have taken to each of the four topics covered by the SPD, and the practical steps you will need to take in preparing planning submissions, to meet the standards set out.

Walking, cycling and other forms of active travel


The SPD deals with the topic of active travel in the following ways:

  • Taking account of all forms of 'micro-mobility' including mobility aids and scooters, wheelchairs, pushchairs, e-bikes, e-scooters, adaptive cycles, cargo bikes and bikes with trailers
  • Providing substantial evidence for the benefits of active travel
  • Establishing objectives and design principles
  • Giving signposts to detailed design guidance
  • Providing proportionate tools and assessment criteria to support developers in making proposals which meet our expectations for promoting active travel
  • Setting out how proposals should integrate plans for active travel both on and off-site

Guidance and requirements

The SPD sets out in detail how you can provide submissions which meet expectations, in terms of providing for walking, cycling and other methods of active travel. 
There are clear design requirements, and criteria for assessing your design proposals for walking and cycling. These include giving consideration to the following aspects:

  • Accessibility: Accessibility with regards to directness, continuity and inclusivity

  • Safety and Security: Safety requirements, such as the need for lighting, natural surveillance, well designed routeing and personal security

  • Comfort: User comfort, such as the provision of seating, adequate route widths, surfacing and quality of environment

  • Legibility: Ability to navigate, such as through legible routes, signage and wayfinding.

We require developments to plan for both on-site and off-site active travel movements, and ensure seamless integration between the two. You will need to analyse origins, destinations and routes in terms of travel demand and potential barriers to walking and cycling. If your analysis identifies issues, the SPD supports you in designing solutions, by setting out design principles and stakeholder consultation standards. 

The SPD includes guidance on best practice and design requirements in terms of providing for active travel. It also explains what you will need to provide in the proposed Active Travel Checklist which you will need to include with transport submissions. The document supports this requirement, setting out key questions as to how proposals and masterplans support active travel, requiring responses and evidence to be signposted. This should be an important tool in considering development proposals in terms of active travel.   



The parking section of the SPD covers storage for cars, bicycles and other forms of wheeled transport. The approach covers the following aspects of the topic:

  • Car and cycle parking standards, including standards for a wide variety of wheeled vehicles, such as micro-scooters, powered two-wheelers, electric vehicles and commercial vehicles
  • Parking facility design standards (such as the layout and size of spaces, and disabled bay provision)
  • A wealth of information as to how developments should accommodate different types of car and cycle parking

Intended outcomes

  • Reducing motor vehicle usage and promote active travel and public transport options
  • Creating low-car and car-free spaces for residents and visitors to developments
  • Improving road safety within developments through parking design

Guidance and requirements

Parking Policy and Standards were previously included within the Placemaking Plan (2017). The Local Plan Partial Update (LPPU) sets the Policy basis for this SPD, which has enhanced detail on this topic, to better reflect our Climate Emergency objectives. This has been supported by an extensive evidence review.

Key principles of the parking standards are summarised as follows: 

  • We have developed a zonal approach to setting parking standards from previous parking policy. This assesses how accessible different areas of our district are, and sets parking standards accordingly. We have set the following four zones:
    • Zone A: Bath City Centre
    • Zone B: Outer Bath, Keynsham and Saltford
    • Zone C: Towns and Villages
    • Zone D: Rural
  • We have set origin car parking (outside dwellings in residential developments) as requiring maximum standards. We are setting this level to achieve low car developments where the conditions exist to do so (for example, excellent accessibility, car clubs and Controlled Parking Zones (CPZ) to limit impact of overspill parking). Elsewhere, we are aiming to avoid over-provision, which can have detrimental effects on the quality of the places that we create. We are also increasing cycle parking minimum standards, to support cycle ownership;
  • For destination car parking (for visitors or commuters travelling to non-residential developments), we have retained the use of maximum standards from previous policy. We have reviewed and adjusted these maximum standards, in line with our objectives to promote sustainable transport and avoid encouraging unnecessary car usage. Conversely, we have reviewed and increased cycle parking requirements, where we consider this necessary, to support increased uptake of cycling
  • Applying an Accessibility Analysis, with the zonal approach as a starting point, supports a site specific analysis of appropriate parking levels. This enables variation to the required standards set out for parking, on the basis of accessibility, providing greater flexibility, appropriate to the local context. Where you are proposing an increase from maximum standards, you will need to provide evidence that all reasonable sustainable travel alternatives have been exhausted, and therefore a deviation from the standards is appropriate for your development.

Parking design and layout

When undertaken correctly, parking design and layout can have a positive impact on the safety of all road users, access for emergency services, the quality of the environment, and the character and appearance of development, in addition to improving health and wellbeing and reducing inequalities. The SPD sets requirements for the location, layout and design of parking, including minimum space / dimension requirements. This includes car parking (including Blue Badge and parking for people with young children), cycle parking (including a range of cycle types), micro-scooters, powered two-wheelers, electric vehicles and commercial vehicles.

Ultra-Low Emissions Vehicles (ULEV)

Reducing car usage overall is the most important way to cut down the harmful impacts of car travel. Another important and practical step is to encourage people to move to less polluting Ultra-Low Emissions Vehicles (ULEV) and Electric Vehicles (EV).

This SPD sits in the context of wider strategies and partnerships to increase uptake of ULEV. These include:

  • Developing ways to build up charging network
  • Government incentives, including fiscal policy
  • Private investment in charging networks


The ULEV element of the SPD applies to new development and re-developments requiring a 'major planning consent.' It deals with the topic in the following ways:

  • Outlining a strategy for assessing what charging infrastructure would be needed for new residential and business developments
  • Providing guiding principles for your developments, including design and location of charging networks to support safe and successful implementation
  • Demonstrating the importance of providing ULEV infrastructure
  • Defining standards and how they are applied

Guidance and requirements

The guidance sets out the ways that you will need to plan and provide for electric vehicle charging needs, now and in the future, when submitting applications for major developments.

  • The SPD includes charging design principles to support successful implementation. These include providing adequate access for other road and pavement users, including avoiding trailing leads and trip hazards, and minimising street clutter.
  • ULEV charging infrastructure provision should be based on identifying the needs of specific ULEV user groups in order to ensure cohesive and balanced delivery, especially when it comes to car parking. For example, charging requirements in terms of speed of charger and level of provision will vary significantly between residences, supermarkets, workplaces and transit locations such as service stations.
  • The SPD sets out standards for speed of charger, and types of required provision in different types of developments, as follows:
    • Speed of provision: Charger types vary, with 7KW considered as a 'fast' charger, and greater than 50KW as a 'rapid' charger.
    • Type of provision: 'Active' or 'Passive'. Active provision is the implementation of fully connected “ready to use” charging infrastructure. Passive provision is the implementation of underlying infrastructure, including additional capacity in the connection and distribution system to the local distribution network provider. Passive provision effectively future-proofs for uptake above what is forecast. Whilst initial capital cost is increased, the cost and disruption involved in installing chargers in future is reduced; balancing cost and provision.
  • The standards require each dwelling where parking is provided to have access to a fast, active charge point, to ensure widespread access to a home charge point, as the majority of ULEV charging occurs at home. For single dwellings with on-plot parking, this equates to one charger per dwelling, regardless of the number of spaces per dwelling. Where parking is shared, all spaces will need an active charge point. Larger residential developments with additional local facilities will need to provide an additional rapid charge point.
  • For non-residential development, one in ten spaces will need an active fast charge point, with one in two spaces (up to 30 parking spaces) having passive provision, and one in five spaces having passive provision, where there are more than 30 spaces. This allows expected demand to be met with active provision, whilst being future-proofed for higher levels of demand and technological advances.

Travel Plans

Travel Plans are an essential tool to manage the transport needs of an organisation or development site. When prepared and delivered well, they can deliver a wide range of benefits, which include the following: 

  • Encouraging sustainable travel
  • Lessening traffic generation and its detrimental impacts
  • Reducing carbon emissions and the associated impacts on climate change and health of residents
  • Creating accessible, connected, inclusive communities
  • Improving health and wellbeing outcomes and quality of life
  • Improving road safety
  • Reducing the need for new development to increase existing road capacity or provide new roads


The SPD deals with the topic of Travel Plans in the following ways:

  • Giving guidance on the right sort of Travel Plan for different kinds of development
  • Setting out the environmental, community, safety and health benefits of well-prepared Travel Plans
  • Providing a checklist for Travel Plan design and contents. We have included model clauses and conditions within the SPD
  • Offering a choice of delivery options for an appropriate Travel Plan
  • Setting out how Travel Plans will be monitored, and remedial action taken if necessary

Delivery and monitoring of Travel Plans

We offer two delivery options for Travel Plans, with a schedule of rates provided in the SPD:

  • Our council team will be fully responsible for managing and implementing the Travel Plan on your behalf, in return for a set contribution based on number of dwellings or floor area. 
  • You will be responsible for funding, managing and implementing the Travel Plan, alongside a non-refundable monitoring fee and a bond to provide security until the Travel Plan is delivered.

You will always be responsible for drafting a policy-compliant Travel Plan, regardless of the delivery option you choose. We will need to approve your Travel Plan as part of your planning submission. We will secure the delivery of the Plan by imposing a Planning obligation or condition on the permission granted to any submission, with the majority secured by obligation.

We will monitor and review any Travel Plans against targets. Where agreed outcomes are not being achieved, required changes and remedial activities will be discussed, agreed and implemented.