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Policy T7 Freight and servicing


  1. Opportunity Area Planning Frameworks, Area Action Plans and other area-based plans should include freight and servicing strategies. These should seek to:
    1. 1)   reduce freight trips to, from and within these areas
    2. 2)   coordinate the provision of infrastructure and facilities to manage freight and servicing at an area-wide level
    3. 3)   seek to reduce emissions from freight, such as through sustainable last-mile schemes and the provision of rapid electric vehicle charging points for freight vehicles.

Such strategies should be developed through policy or through the formulation of a masterplan for a planning application.

  1. To support carbon-free travel from 2050, the provision of hydrogen refuelling stations and rapid electric vehicle charging points at logistics and industrial locations is supported.
  2. Wharves and railheads involved in the distribution of aggregates should be safeguarded in line with Policy SI9 Safeguarded waste sites, Policy SI10 Aggregates and Policy SI5 Water infrastructure.
  3. Consolidation and distribution sites at all scales should be designed to enable 24-hour operation to encourage and support out-of-peak deliveries.
  4. Development proposals for new consolidation and distribution facilities should be supported provided that they:
    1. deliver mode shift from road to rail or water without adversely impacting passenger services (existing or planned) and without generating significant increases in street-based movements
    2. reduce traffic volumes within London
    3. reduce emissions from freight and servicing trips
    4. enable sustainable last-mile movements, including by cycle and electric vehicle.
  5. Development proposals should facilitate sustainable freight and servicing, including through the provision of adequate space for servicing and deliveries off-street. Construction Logistics Plans and Delivery and Servicing Plans will be required and should be developed in accordance with Transport for London guidance and in a way which reflects the scale and complexities of developments.
  6. Developments should be designed and managed so that deliveries can be received outside of peak hours and in the evening or night time. Appropriate facilities are required to minimise additional freight trips arising from missed deliveries and thus facilitate efficient online retailing.
  7. At large developments, facilities to enable micro-consolidation should be provided, with management arrangements set out in Delivery and Servicing Plans.
  8. Development proposals must adopt appropriate construction site design standards to enable the use of safer, lower trucks with increased levels of direct vision on waste and landfill sites, tip sites, transfer stations and construction sites.

An efficient freight network is necessary to support the function of the city. This policy seeks to facilitate sustainable freight movement in London through consolidation, modal shift and promoting deliveries at different times of day and night in order to reduce the impact on road congestion and air quality, and conflict with other uses.

Currently many deliveries of non-urgent goods are made, unnecessarily, at congested times of the day. Lorries and vans are often less than half full and as many as two in every three delivery slots are missed, leading to repeat trips that cause additional congestion and emissions. Many van and lorry trips could be avoided or re-timed if freight and servicing activity were better consolidated. Regional consolidation and distribution centres at the edge of London are needed to serve the city and town centres, coupled with micro-distribution centres in central and inner London. The identification and protection of new sites for load consolidation at a range of scales in central, inner and outer London to aid sustainable last-mile consolidation is supported.

The Mayor will work with all relevant partners to improve the safety and efficiency of freight and servicing across London and support consolidation within and beyond London, as well as the retiming of movements to avoid peak hours. Where kerbside loading is required it should be designed to minimise the impact on other road users and pedestrians and seek to minimise the transfer distance from vehicle to destination.

When planning freight movements, development proposals should demonstrate through Construction Logistics Plans and Delivery and Servicing Plans that all reasonable endeavours have been taken towards the use of non-road vehicle modes. Where rail and water freight facilities are available, Transport for London’s freight tools should be used when developing the site’s freight strategy.

Delivery and Servicing Plans should demonstrate how the requirements of the site are met, including addressing missed deliveries. Appropriate measures include large letter or parcel boxes and concierges accepting deliveries. Car-free developments should consider facilitation of home deliveries in a way that does not compromise the benefits of creating low-car or car-free environments.

Transport for London’s guidance on Construction Logistics and Delivery and Servicing Plans should be adhered to when preparing planning applications. Plans should be developed in line with this guidance and adopt the latest standards around safety and environmental performance of vehicles. The plans should be monitored and managed throughout the construction and operational phases of the development. TfL’s freight tools including CLOCS (Construction Logistics and Community Safety) should be utilised to plan for and monitor site conditions to enable the use of vehicles with improved levels of direct vision. This should be demonstrated through a Site Assessment within a Construction Logistics Plan. Development proposals should demonstrate ‘good’ on-site ground conditions ratings or the mechanisms to reach this level.