I joined…

In June of this year, following the completion of a Geography degree, like many other transport planners in the team! My interest within the sector first developed through courses in urban policy, regeneration and GIS; and so I was keen to start a career using these skills.

I decided to undertake work experience within the planning department at a county council. From this I advanced my understanding of both spatial and transport planning; determining how national, regional and local policy promotes people’s movement across the country, region, city and town.

I got into transport planning…

Accessibility to efficient, safe, reliable and affordable transport has the capability to improve the quality of life for residents, so it feels rewarding to assist developers in making the best transport choices!

Additionally I knew transport planning would help me further my data analytics skills, as these become more vital as technology is incorporated more and more into the planning process.

On a daily basis… 

Being a perpetual early riser means I’m typically the first to arrive at the office. Cycling really is the fastest way to commute across central London during the rush hours! Once I’ve cooled down it’s usually time to check any urgent e-mails and catch-up with important developments in the transport world. It’s a surprisingly fast-moving sector, with innovative and often controversial schemes going on across the world.

Being early-on in my career means I spend a lot of my time assisting on project work, over a very broad scale. This can range from huge city-based commercial developments, to smaller suburban mixed-use units along with stadia and events planning. This work is typically comprised of producing supporting documents that developers require to achieve planning permission. These usually determine the present transport context, proposals to improve the network or mitigate against the development’s impact, and plan for how visitors and staff will travel to it.

I see myself

A short while ago representatives of the Charted Institute for Highways and Transport (CIHT) undertook a really interesting presentation at our office. This demonstrated to me the importance of getting involved in a professional body and how you can use it to develop both your knowledge of the industry and improve your career aspirations. I plan to join the CIHT once I have the required level of experience.

The best bits of my job are…

It is particularly tricky to pin-point specific areas that I enjoy the most in transport planning. I’d say foremost would be the satisfaction gained where a developer has actioned a document devised by myself and has incorporated them into their plans, meaning that those proposed changes are going to be constructed. I’ve currently got one example of how my work has been implemented – a restaurant development that is on my list to visit at some point in the near future!

I also enjoy the combination of policy, data analytics, technical report writing and business development that comes with the role, meaning that no working day is ever the same. As with any type of project-based work, it can be frustrating when issues arise or the scope of a project is changed dramatically and I’d say that’s the only downside of transport planning!

The team at Momentum…

Is notably close knit, with regular social activities. This ranges from our daily lunchtime table football games, to out-of-office activities. Our last social activity involved go-karting, which really exposed everybody’s competitive natures. This really wasn’t something I saw myself doing at work!

My most memorable moment (so far)

For project work, I’d say getting out and about to see projects in the flesh sticks out to me as being particularly memorable. This included going out to Croydon to undertake a highway conditions survey on a particularly warm day, and also getting to visit the Port of London for a meeting. I’m definitely aiming to have many more memorable moments like these as I advance in my career!

When I’m not working

Outside of work I’m a keen photographer, taking my camera out on trips abroad along with assisting in Momentum’s branding strategy (some of my photographs can be found on the website)! This leads me to taking photos of interesting examples of public space and architectures abroad. The photo at the top of this article was taken in the vernacular historical centre of The Hague, in the Netherlands.  I recommend a visit if you’re into compact cities focused on the human scale!