Heathrow Airport has hired what it says is the World’s first Airport Cycle Officer, who will work to increase the amount of people cycling to the airport.
Getting 16,500 local airport workers onto bikes will be the goal of Heathrow’s new airport cycle officer, who has now started his post.
Ali Jafarey, who Heathrow say is the world’s first dedicated airport cycle officer, is leading a one year cycle partnership between Heathrow and Sustrans, the UK’s foremost cycling and walking charity. The partnership will work to make the airport’s cycle routes safer, more accessible and train airport workers to feel more confident on their bikes.
In the first year Sustrans and Heathrow will publish a cycle strategy aligned with the wider West London Cycling strategy. This will be drafted in conjunction with local authorities and link Heathrow’s existing cycling network with corridors running to Feltham, Chiswick, West Drayton, Hayes, Slough and Staines.
Persuading airport workers to take up cycling is part of the airport’s wider campaign to reduce single occupancy car journeys, as well as related congestion and emissions.
Theo Panayi, Sustainable Travel Manager for Heathrow said: “We are looking forward to the partnership with Sustrans, which will make the airport’s cycle routes safer and more accessible, helping many of our 16,500 colleagues who live locally feel more confident about making the journey to the airport on their bikes.”
James Scott, Sustrans Programme Manager for Workplace Behaviour Change said: “Heathrow is the largest centre of employment in West London and is uniquely placed to deliver changes to the cycling experience our region. Our one year cycle partnership project will help make cycling to work the easy choice for staff, enabling them to travel more sustainably and ease congestion and emissions in local road networks. I look forward to seeing the changes that we create to deliver a great cycling experience, and improve employee wellbeing.”