A transport body that focuses on the South West has identified five themes, including a switch to electric vehicles, that have emerged from a study that looked to identify connectivity issues in the region.

Peninsula Transport, who cover Cornwall, Devon, Plymouth, Somerset and Torbay, are part way through an ‘Economic Connectivity Study’ that looks to understand how trends in technology, transport behaviour and climate policy will affect travel in the area.

Cllr Geoff Brown, Chair of Peninsula Transport and portfolio holder for transport at Cornwall Council said: “We are in a period of unprecedented change in transport so it’s absolutely essential we don’t view this as business as usual.”

He added: “We need to be thinking about how transport will transform over the coming years, what effects this could have on our region’s economy and the opportunities this will present; that way we’re better equipped to prosper in changing world.”

The five identified emerging factors are: technology disruptors - including self-driving vehicles and transport apps which help people to be more mobile; urbanisation - the change in how people use transport across the Peninsula; world of work - understanding how structural economic trends are effecting the business sector; flexible lifestyles – understanding that people are increasingly working from home; decarbonisation - acknowledging the need to plan for a switch to electric vehicles in line with binding targets.

The initial results from the study that was commissioned in March will be heard at a meeting on July 3 by board members of Peninsula Transport, as the body looks to ensure that they are equipped for the future.