Mayor urged to appoint Freight Commissioner for London
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan has been urged to appoint a "Freight Commissioner" in order to navigate the growing logistical demands of the capital.
London Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has made the call in recognition of the growing demands of businesses and residents as London heads towards megacity status.
While LCCI is broadly supportive of the Mayor's efforts to reduce congestion and related impacts on air quality, measures taken to achieve this need to be made in tandem with supporting London as a thriving city.
London's population is set to grow from 8.6 million to an estimated 10 million by 2030, putting greater strain on the city's infrastructure, both in terms of public transport and service delivery.
A Freight Commissioner would create and lead a vision for enabling efficient logistics and to develop a world-class freight and logistics environment in the capital within the Mayor's Transport Strategy.
Natalie Chapman, deputy chair of LCCI's Transport Committee, and Head of Policy for London at the Freight Transport Association said: "We are looking at a rapidly expanding population in London, which means not only do all these people need to be able to move about but they also require access to all the essential goods and services they want and need.
"People living in and visiting London expect to be able to buy their morning coffee, visit the shops and find everything they want in stock and also have a wide restaurant choice if they go out for an evening.
"This doesn't just magically happen. Shops and restaurants have to be supplied and stocked and that means freight and logistics have to be properly co-ordinated."
NOTES TO EDITOR: 1. London Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) is the capital's largest and most representative business organisation, with members ranging in size from multi-national companies to SMEs and sole traders. 2. Natalie Chapman is available for further comment and interview. (Radio studio facilities with ISDN line are available)