The production of
this Code has brought to light the need for further applied research to assist
with the process of planning, designing and implementing transport schemes.
Monitoring forms an essential part of this with feedback used to assess the
effectiveness of measures. In addition monitoring is valuable to evaluate new
and improved techniques particularly relating to mitigation measures.
and exchange of experience
A relatively recent
development in highway planning is the inclusion of landscape and wildlife
issues within the assessment, in particular, for strategic routes. A number of
states have published technical manuals (Box 6.1), but to be of wider value
greater dissemination and exchange is required between practitioners and
countries. The COST 341 programme could be one such outlet.
should consider the accessibility of information with respect to language, with
a focus relating to broad landscape and habitat types. With significant
differences in landscape ecology across Europe the application of a landscape
character approach to transport planning is useful. For example, the Norwegian
technical manual considers roads around lakes, across agricultural land, etc
(Norwegian Public Rods Administration).
Manuals focus mostly
on the planning and design stages of major roads with few considering minor
roads, or the practicalities of construction and maintenance, and this needs to
be addressed. Method statements as to how to undertake construction work are a
recent development of
procurement/contractual arrangements and part of environmental management. There
would be benefits if these were co-ordinated and appraised i.e. what techniques
are effective and why.
Monitoring is a
legal requirement in relatively few states e.g. Rosette 1998, SETRA 1993, but is
essential if mistakes are to be corrected and lessons learnt. Success stories
may make good headlines but investigation of failures and the application of
lessons learnt, can lead to future success stories. Such monitoring is essential
to check the function of a scheme, for example the integrity of protective
fencing, or the appropriateness of special crossings for fauna.
Also, monitoring is
required to assess the technical value and appropriateness of innovative
techniques, for example translocated areas, or measures to reduce severance of
low flying bat.
There is a
relatively large body of scientific research which has examined the effects of
highways on particular species. Much of this needs to be put in a user-friendly
format to assist practitioners, i.e. to consider the significance of the
findings and their wider practical application.
publications relate to the effects of railways. This may be a consequence of the
historical development of the network and the administrative structure. COST 341
should provide further research relating to aspects of fragmentation.
road-related research may be applicable to railways, significant structural and
user differences merit more specific work. In view of the proposals to upgrade
and/or extend the network for high-speed trains and freight, such research is
Over the last 20
years or so, concern about the degrading landscape of river valleys and
associated wetlands from drainage and related engineering works has lead to a
number of publications e.g. Ward et al (1994), and initiatives involved
with the restoration of rivers. Such work is applicable to navigable waterways
and there would be benefits in a greater exchange of this information.
for capital and maintenance works along waterways need to encompass other uses
in addition to those of transport, as well as rehabilitating of abandoned
waterways. Evidence to date suggests there are few monitoring studies which have
examined the significance of the barrier effects of canals on the movement of
animals and needs to be examined further.