TRICS Consortium Limited has taken the regrettable decision to cancel this year’s TRICS User Meeting in London, which was due to take place on 25th November 2020.
In recent weeks we have been in communication with the venue of our event, BMA House in Central London, whose staff have been working very hard behind the scenes to make their venue Covid-19 safe, including the introduction of social distancing measures and revised safe catering arrangements. However, test events have yet to take place in the UK, and it seems that the resumption of meetings and events of this type will not be happening on the 1st of October 2020 as previously envisaged.
This, coupled with ongoing increases in Covid-19 cases across the UK in recent weeks, has led us to our decision to cancel our event. Meeting with our users at our annual events is an important part of the work that we do, as the feedback and ideas we receive at our User Meetings and Training & Development Forums has always been fantastic, as has the networking opportunities that our events provide for all members of the TRICS Community. We certainly look forward to the time when our events can resume, and we can all meet again and discuss all the elements of our project.
The good news is that we have agreed with the venue that we can hold our 2021 TRICS User Meeting there next June, again dependent on the situation in the UK at that time, and we will commence with preparations for this event early in the new year, with a new agenda put together, and we will of course let everyone know when there is further detail available. We also intend to hold our Training & Development Forum in November 2021, so we really want to get our events back to normal once it is safe to do so.
Please keep safe, and we look forward to meeting with you all as soon as we can.
Therefore, it is our intention to resume with SAM site visits from August 2020, with surveys resuming from 1st October 2020 until the end of November. This means that new SAM survey agreements can now be raised. However, our initial priority is to contact clients who had previously requested surveys in 2020, which were postponed in March, to assess what their current project situations are. Once we have a better understanding we can plan for the possible addition of new surveys. So, although we can raise new agreements, please note that we cannot guarantee that all requests for Autumn 2020 surveys will be fulfilled.
Also note that the deadline for raising new agreements for potential Autumn 2020 surveys is 1st October 2020, with any subsequent agreements raised being based on potential Spring 2021 surveys. Any site visits previously undertaken for surveys that were subsequently postponed are now void, so in every case we will need to start the SAM process from scratch.
Our top priority is the safety of our staff and everyone else involved in our surveys. Therefore, we shall assess our ability to mitigate risk of Covid-19 on a case-by-case basis, which may mean that some surveys will need to be provisionally scheduled for Spring 2021, whilst more straightforward surveys (with minimal risk and requiring less face-to-face interaction) could go ahead in Autumn 2020, again depending on our capacity.
As I am sure everyone will appreciate, this is a fluid and evolving situation, and although we are pleased to be able to resume our SAM survey programme, this is subject to change should the Covid-19 situation in the UK worsen and new official guidance issued accordingly.
If you do decide to progress with SAM surveys, with the agreement of your own client, the risk of any challenge to the validity of the final results (due to the ongoing Covid-19 situation in the UK) will be down to yourselves, and will not be the responsibility of TRICS Consortium Limited.
We will be approaching this resumption of survey activity in two stages. The first stage is a programme of 100 Level 1 (traffic) surveys across all regions of the UK and Ireland. This has been fast-tracked, with the intention being to get some new, good quality survey data onto the database as quickly as we can, whilst at the same time observing official guidance on safety (meaning that no interviewing will be taking place and the surveys will be fully observational in nature). For this programme we have selected a number of land use sub-categories that our users identified as being of most importance in the responses we received in our 2020 TRICS User Survey, and these surveys will be taking place through September, October and November 2020.
The second stage is currently provisional, depending on official guidance as we move forward in the coming weeks, but our aim is to undertake a full traffic and multi-modal survey programme across all regions in 2021, with the surveys taking place in the spring and autumn windows. The size of this programme is yet to be confirmed, but we will be aiming for something similar to what we had originally envisaged for the 2020 programme (so likely over 200 surveys). With regards to the multi-modal (Level 2) surveys in this programme, we would like to split these between the spring and autumn windows, but again we will wait to see how things pan out in the coming weeks before making more of a decision on this element. We will of course keep you all informed of how things progress.
There is then the question of specifically commissioned TRICS Standardised Assessment Methodology (SAM) surveys, which also require face to face interviews of pedestrians. As things currently stand our previous March 2020 statement on the suspension of these surveys still applies. We continue to follow official guidance and advice, and cannot as yet provide an indication with confidence as to when SAM surveys will resume. It might be possible that some could take place this autumn, but as things remain very uncertain we cannot commit to anything at this stage. Again, once we are in a better position to make a decision on this we will issue a further statement accordingly.
I am sure this announcement today will be welcomed by everyone within the TRICS Community as a solid step forwards as lockdown restrictions are eased. The strength of our system is its data, and the TRICS team look forward to providing all of our users with regular database updates in the coming months.
Given the current situation with the coronavirus epidemic in the UK, TRICS Consortium Limited has suspended our regional and specifically-commissioned SAM surveys until further notice.
TRICS Consortium Limited is pleased to announce the publication of a new Technical Note, “A Comparison of Vehicular Trip Rate Variation by TRICS Regions and Location Types”, which is now freely available to download by everyone. This report presents the findings of research recently undertaken by the TRICS team into vehicular trip rate variation by region, when compared to an identical exercise by TRICS location type. It examines vehicular trip rate variance by examining three of the largest and most often used land use categories in the TRICS database, these being 01/A (Food Superstores), 02/A (Offices), and 03/A (Houses Privately Owned). Our existing TRICS Good Practice guidance has always advised that our users should refrain from deselecting sites by geographical region as a default method, and instead should consider the TRICS location type along with a number of other local factors that may influence vehicular trip rates. We have now undertaken a set of technical analyses using the TRICS database to provide further clarity on this subject to our Good Practice Guide, which is being updated in 2020. A presentation on the report and its findings will be given at the 2019 TRICS Training & Development Forum in Oxford this November.
TRICS® Training & Development Presentations 2019