Transport planner

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Transport planners manage road, rail and air transport networks at local, regional and national level.

Salary range: £22,000 to £50,000

How to become a transport planner

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship

University

You can do a degree and then join an organisation as a trainee transport planner. Most subjects are accepted though you may have an advantage if you study:

  • geography
  • civil engineering
  • economics
  • town planning
  • environmental science
  • business studies

Many graduates go on to do a postgraduate qualification in transport planning approved by the Transport Planning Society.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
  • a degree in any subject for a postgraduate course

More information

Apprenticeship

You can start by doing a transport planning technician advanced apprenticeship, then move on to a transport planner degree apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship

More information

More information

Professional and industry bodies

You could join the Transport Planning Society or The Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation for professional development and training opportunities.

Further information

You can find out more about becoming a transport planner from the Transport Planning Society.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • knowledge of transport methods, costs and benefits
  • maths knowledge
  • knowledge of engineering science and technology
  • design skills and knowledge
  • analytical thinking skills
  • the ability to work well with others
  • complex problem-solving skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently

What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • simulating transport problems using computer models
  • analysing and interpreting data from transport studies
  • forecasting the impact of new developments like shopping centres
  • looking at schemes to manage traffic, like congestion charging or parking controls
  • studying accident ‘black spots’ to design road safety improvements
  • writing reports for funding bids and planning authorities
  • acting as an expert witness during public enquiries
  • promoting the benefits of public transport, cycling and walking to get around

Working environment

You could work in an office or visit sites.

Career path and progression

You could become a senior transport planner or traffic engineer. You might also move into town planning, policy development or environmental consultancy.

You may improve your career prospects by completing the Transport Planning Professional qualification, or by getting chartered status with a relevant professional body.

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