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Author Topic: Bristol Underground System. Still on the cards?  (Read 765 times)
johnneyw
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« on: October 17, 2019, 01:26:19 pm »

Mayor Marv's state of Bristol speech last night pledged to build an underground system witnhin 10 years. I thought this one was quietly being dropped but I suppose there are elections in the fairly near distance.
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2019, 04:57:31 pm »

Here's the 'transport' section of Marvin Rees' 'State of the City' address, as reported on the Bristol City Council website

Quote

Transformation of transport in the city is needed and will include the following.

A Bus Deal that will:

  • double services on key routes as well as regular commuter services down main arterial routes. This is public investment in prioritisation and infrastructure that will trigger private investment in services as the first step towards making public transport the mode of choice
  • bring greater reliability and connectivity with a loop service a circle line that will connect the city central areas of Broadmead and Cabot Circus to the Centre, Redcliffe, Temple Meads, and Old Market every few minutes
  • Traffic will bypass the city central areas completely enabling pedestrianisation of the Old City and the City Centre.

Mass Transit that will:

  • offer a real alternative to the car
  • be developed within the next decade
  • bring four lines of mainly underground, low carbon, rapid and reliable mass transport:
    • The first line will connect Temple Meads to the airport, looping through the south of Bristol
    • The next line will connect the northern fringe, from Cribbs Causeway to the centre, and the south and east central areas of the city
    • And then finally it will connect the rest to the east, going as far as Lyde Green and Hicks Gate.
  • growing the urban rail network.

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johnneyw
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« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2019, 06:55:44 pm »

When Marv was speaking on BBC Radio Bristol today, the 10 year timeframe quite surprised me, especially when you consider the time taken so far and the years still to go before the much shorter (and partly extant) Portishead Line is due to be ready.
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Noggin
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« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2019, 08:57:56 am »

When Marv was speaking on BBC Radio Bristol today, the 10 year timeframe quite surprised me, especially when you consider the time taken so far and the years still to go before the much shorter (and partly extant) Portishead Line is due to be ready.

Indeed, at the very least you need a couple of years to do the planning, couple of years for the consultation/public enquiry, couple of years to get the act of Parliament/TaWA, then you have to build the thing!

And that is of course assuming that the darn thing can be physically threaded through the city. I've said it before, but heading north from Broadmead, the first real opportunity for the line to surface would be pretty much Southmead, and there aren't many easy sites suitable for station buildings/ventilation shafts.

As for the bus plans, where exactly do they expect traffic to go if they ban traffic from the Old City and the City Centre? Said it before, but surely it would be better to leave it, but introduce a workpace parking levy like Nottingham did and earn some dosh to build something more straightforward like a tram system?
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2019, 09:34:52 am »

Quote
...a loop service a circle line that will connect the city central areas of Broadmead and Cabot Circus to the Centre, Redcliffe, Temple Meads, and Old Market every few minutes

Sounds very familiar. For younger readers, here's what this could look like:


Source: Bristol Omnibus Co Bristol City and Country Area Bus Timetable, 1st December 1974 until 11th October 1975
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johnneyw
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« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2019, 10:09:36 am »

The 1000 cars at Canon's Marsh car park have gone underground and I bet it's rather less than that number now.

Edit: The pedestrian underground car park entrances around Millennium Square always reminded me of Metro Station entrances!
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TonyK
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« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2019, 07:21:05 pm »

Here's the 'transport' section of Marvin Rees' 'State of the City' address, as reported on the Bristol City Council website

Quote

Transformation of transport in the city is needed and will include the following.

A Bus Deal that will:

  • double services on key routes as well as regular commuter services down main arterial routes. This is public investment in prioritisation and infrastructure that will trigger private investment in services as the first step towards making public transport the mode of choice
  • bring greater reliability and connectivity with a loop service a circle line that will connect the city central areas of Broadmead and Cabot Circus to the Centre, Redcliffe, Temple Meads, and Old Market every few minutes
  • Traffic will bypass the city central areas completely enabling pedestrianisation of the Old City and the City Centre.

Mass Transit that will:

  • offer a real alternative to the car
  • be developed within the next decade
  • bring four lines of mainly underground, low carbon, rapid and reliable mass transport:
    • The first line will connect Temple Meads to the airport, looping through the south of Bristol
    • The next line will connect the northern fringe, from Cribbs Causeway to the centre, and the south and east central areas of the city
    • And then finally it will connect the rest to the east, going as far as Lyde Green and Hicks Gate.
  • growing the urban rail network.



The words seem to be carefully chosen. Were the plan to be the building of an underground railway, I am sure the council document would have said that explicitly. So what is it? Underground MetroBust is asking for trouble. A line from the airport "looping through the south of Bristol" conjures up a vision of a railway joining the main line around Parson Street, but MetroBust arguably loops through the south of Bristol. Similarly, joining up Cribbs and the northern frozen zone to the nearby railway  would be very welcome, but underground?

So we wait with bated breath. Can Marvin start from scratch and build the Corbyn-Rees line in under a decade in a city that started with an idea for trams in 2000 and ended up with three new bus routes and falling passenger numbers 18 years later? And is this contingent on a Labour landslide locally and nationally? My inner sceptic is unconvinced.

Which is sad, because Something Must Be Done. Bristol has tried nothing much, and is all out of ideas.Council bus services weren't the answer, so we privatised them. That didn't work, so we spent tens of millions on new bus lanes, and that didn't work. So we spent hundreds of millions on bus routes, and that isn't helping much.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2019, 12:04:01 pm by TonyK » Logged

Now, please!
Bmblbzzz
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« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2019, 09:32:06 am »

A petty disagreement, TonyK, Bristol isn't "all out of ideas", it's full of ideas but all out of putting those ideas into action.
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broadgage
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« Reply #8 on: October 23, 2019, 01:41:17 pm »

I rather doubt that this will happen.
Tunneling is hugely expensive and is likely to get more so due to the safety industry requiring ever wider tunnels.

New underground railways require a walkway beside the track for emergency use, how long until the safety industry require this to be wider than at present ? or provided on both sides ?
How long before conductor rails are banned, even in tunnels ? 25Kv overhead will require larger tunnels.
And of course newts, bats, and nimbys.

Look at Crossrail for some idea of cost overruns and delays.

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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #9 on: October 23, 2019, 02:16:01 pm »

Were the plan to be the building of an underground railway [my italics - RS], I am sure the council document would have said that explicitly.

Last time I heard him talking about this kind of thing Marvin Rees said, sotto voce, '...not necessarily on rails'.

Underground busways are not without precedent: the Lincoln Tunnel XBL is sometimes cited as an example of underground BRT. But this is usually by folk whose politics lie to the right of where one might assume a Labour Mayor's would lie and who, one would assume, could not imagine a world in which their fortunes sunk so low as to necessitate them actually having to use it...
« Last Edit: October 25, 2019, 01:13:42 pm by Red Squirrel » Logged
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