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Author Topic: Airport stations - a bus ride too far from the away?  (Read 3611 times)
grahame
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« on: January 08, 2020, 06:14:14 am »

From the Yorkshire Post

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A senior politician in Leeds has claimed a planned rail station serving Leeds Bradford Airport would be “too far” from the site.

Updated plans to revamp transport links to the airport and nearby sites – including a new road and a “parkway” airport rail station – were unveiled by Leeds City Council last month.

However, the leader of the authority’s Conservatives group Coun Andrew Carter has complained those using the station would have to complete their journey by bus and called for more “ambitious” solutions.

Southampton and Gatwick Airport stations "work" ... Teesside Airport station does not. What about Cardiff Airport's Rhoose station, or the effectiveness in passenger numbers / taking a substantial proportion of traffic of the Rail Air links at Exeter or Bristol?

Does it matter anyway - are we going to head back from the age of the plane to the age of the train?
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ChrisB
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« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2020, 09:50:48 am »

Luton works so well that the buses can't cope (even at 10min intervals - and their building a Birmingham airport-style people mover.
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Bob_Blakey
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« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2020, 12:49:13 pm »

In the case of Leeds/Bradford (LBA) we are probably looking at the usual lack of ambition and/or finance on the part of both local & national government. A brief glance at the map shows that a spur from the Leeds<>Harrogate line just south of the southern portal of Bramhope tunnel would provide a fairly clear - but possibly NIMBY enraging - run to the airport terminal. Given the preponderance of farmland along the route perhaps a cut & cover tunnel for most of it would be appropriate. I would regard a 'parkway' station as an utter waste of time and money.

However, as has already been mentioned, would this be a sensible use of taxpayer moolah? LBA is not that busy and passenger numbers seem to have plateaued at around 4m (2017/18 figures). This means that each flight carries an average of 104 pax, most flights being operated by Ryanair / Jet2 737-800's which seat 189 so the load factors look not that great (Warning: Back of a fag packet calculation). With the forthcoming Northern Powerhouse Rail / HS2 (The next High Speed line(s)) (don't hold your breath) developments I suspect the roughly daily BA» (British Airways - about) flights to/from LHR might be for the chop and Ryanair are cutting routes over the next 3 months. Most of the passenger traffic appears to be package holiday related and this is very likely to be affected by future government action over climate change concerns.

What seems to be missing is a proper survey of LBA passengers which asks pertinent questions concerning whether they would use an airport rail link if one was provided; I can only find documents relating to a 2016 Leeds City Council consultation which dealt solely with road access upgrades. 
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grahame
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« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2020, 11:16:51 am »

Southampton and Gatwick Airport stations "work" ... Teesside Airport station does not. ...

Plans to change that.  From Tees Business

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Tees Valley mayor Ben Houchen has announced plans to invest £6m into the redevelopment of the railway station at Teesside International Airport, as part of plans to invest almost £40m to improve transport across Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool.

Mayor Houchen is seeking to secure additional service stops at Teesside International Airport railway station as part his 10-year rescue plan and has vowed to upgrade facilities so the station matches his long-term vision for a thriving airport.
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Bob_Blakey
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« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2020, 02:48:59 pm »

Bemused by the following paragraph from the specified Tees Business article:

'The funding would allow initial improvement work at the station to begin, including the removal of a platform and the existing footbridge, before further upgrades can take place.'

If that is not a massive typo of some kind, I would struggle to understand how such actions would provide any benefit. Looking at the current station layout it seems to me that provision of lifts - has it escaped the Teesside mayor's notice that air passengers often have fairly heavy luggage? - would be the obvious first step.
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grahame
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« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2020, 09:13:40 pm »

picked up ... BBC» (British Broadcasting Corporation - home page) for example.

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Little-used Teesside Airport railway station gets £6m boost

I am one of the handful of people who took the train to Teesside Airport Station last year ... the walked to the next station at Dinsdale rather than waiting for the next train that called.  I was the only person to get off the train (and the train manager was surprised to see me) an no-one got on.

There are two timber-built platforms and a footbridge connecting them, but the footbridge is considered unsafe and has (or, rather "had") a Network Rail chain across it, declaring it closed.  The far platform itself looked to be in non-bad order, with a waiting shelter in which could be seen the station's payphone. The platform on which I got off is just that - a platform.

The slope down off the platform leads to a turning circle ... although hansomely protected by double yellow lines, I suspect that road vehicles are as rare as calling trains.  The place has an air of abandonment, the walk to the terminal too.  And the terminal - though appearing better and open - was blocked off by a high wire fence and a locked gate, so had I been going for a flight I would have been scuppered.   A further walk took me up to the roundabout at the airport entrance - where I came out of the industrial entrance and there's anther newer and far smarter one to the terminal.

Some of my pictures from 2nd June 2019




















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grahame
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« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2020, 09:29:24 pm »

How ironic that BBC2 has just had Teeside Airport on Qi ...
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JontyMort
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« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2020, 05:25:29 pm »


Southampton and Gatwick Airport stations "work" ... Teesside Airport station does not. What about Cardiff Airport's Rhoose station, or the effectiveness in passenger numbers / taking a substantial proportion of traffic of the Rail Air links at Exeter or Bristol?


Southampton and Gatwick both work (also Birmingham) because the station is actually at the airport. People will use airport stations only if the trip from platform to checkin does not involve another link in the transport chain - so walking a short distance and/or escalators are OK (I count the link at Brum as an escalator for this purpose), but a bus or taxi for the last bit is not. The logic is that if I’d wanted to do a bus for the last bit I would have parked and used the shuttle from the car park.

Bristol is an interesting one. Uniquely among airports, it is not convenient even for Bristol. I have no idea how much of the bus traffic from Temple Meads transfers from rail and how much originates there - mostly the latter, I suspect.

By the same token, the absurd failure to put in westward-facing curves from the Heathrow spur to the GWML (Great Western Main Line) (not once, but twice) would never have happened elsewhere.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2020, 10:05:30 pm by JontyMort » Logged
ellendune
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« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2020, 09:16:09 pm »

By the same token, the absurd failure to put in westward-facing curves to the GWML (Great Western Main Line) (not once, but twice) would never have happened elsewhere.

Am I the only one who does not understand this?
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grahame
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« Reply #9 on: February 02, 2020, 09:43:19 pm »

By the same token, the absurd failure to put in westward-facing curves to the GWML (Great Western Main Line) (not once, but twice) would never have happened elsewhere.

Am I the only one who does not understand this?

No - I'm scratching my head too.   Only briefly, as I've been busy on the buses today.

Looking now, guessing,  Airport Junction?
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JontyMort
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« Reply #10 on: February 02, 2020, 10:04:00 pm »

By the same token, the absurd failure to put in westward-facing curves to the GWML (Great Western Main Line) (not once, but twice) would never have happened elsewhere.

Am I the only one who does not understand this?

No - I'm scratching my head too.   Only briefly, as I've been busy on the buses today.

Looking now, guessing,  Airport Junction?

Apologies, I meant Heathrow as you surmised. Now edited to make clear.
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johnneyw
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« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2020, 12:11:35 pm »

Doncaster Sheffield Airport set for £10million expansion and could be given its own railway line according to their local press.  The article below is a little confused as it refers to the project being "shovel ready" yet also points out that there is still much bureaucracy to be sorted out.

https://www.thestar.co.uk/business/doncaster-sheffield-airport-set-ps10million-expansion-and-could-be-given-its-own-railway-line-1381546
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« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2020, 08:22:56 pm »

I'm sure the reason they don't advertise Cranbrook for Exeter Airport is because they do not want to improve the train service by re-instating the double track to Yeovil which would also make a decent avoiding line. One day there might be a Devon Metro.
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Bob_Blakey
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« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2020, 10:26:10 am »

...Cranbrook for Exeter Airport...

doesn't currently work because the airport bus, Stagecoach 56/56A, bypasses Cranbrook, which is served by Stagecoach 4/4A/4B. I can't see this setup changing since there is no direct 'as the crow flies' route between the two locations; a significant double back via Clyst Honiton would be required. In the future the required brand new road just isn't going to happen.

There are bus stop facilities at Cranbrook railway station but these are not currently in use. I suppose a Cranbrook<>Airport shuttle would be a possibility but, as previously mentioned, air passengers generally avoid such multi-modal arrangements. 
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grahame
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« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2021, 10:26:59 pm »

In the case of Leeds/Bradford (LBA) we are probably looking at the usual lack of ambition and/or finance on the part of both local & national government. A brief glance at the map shows that a spur from the Leeds<>Harrogate line just south of the southern portal of Bramhope tunnel would provide a fairly clear - but possibly NIMBY enraging - run to the airport terminal. Given the preponderance of farmland along the route perhaps a cut & cover tunnel for most of it would be appropriate. I would regard a 'parkway' station as an utter waste of time and money.

However, as has already been mentioned, would this be a sensible use of taxpayer moolah? LBA is not that busy and passenger numbers seem to have plateaued at around 4m (2017/18 figures). ...

It progresses - from Leeds Live

Quote
Newly released images show what a planned GBP-42 million parkway rail station near Leeds Bradford Airport could look like.

The station, which will be on the Leeds/Harrogate line, has been in the planning stages for a number of years, and a public consultation on the proposals has now been launched.


The station will be between Horsforth Station and the Southern end of Bramhope tunnel, and a shuttle bus will transport people to the airport.
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