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  • CBT / SW group launch: November 14, 2015
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Author Topic: Help Launch New Transport Campaign Group in South West  (Read 16847 times)
grahame
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« Reply #15 on: November 14, 2015, 08:35:00 pm »

I've notes from Steven Melia and Steven Joseph's talks which I've posted in "frequent posters" at http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=16462.0 - the quality of my text is diabolical and not fit for public consumption.

That's why I've tried to edit your text there.  Roll Eyes Wink Shocked

Mooch apweciated, Chris!
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #16 on: November 15, 2015, 12:47:16 pm »

A very interesting day.

Apologies for repeating here some of what grahame has posted elsewhere, but I thought I'd add my slant on it.

Steve Melia, Senior Lecturer in Transport and Planning at UWE, gave a particularly thought-provoking presentation which called into question a lot of assumptions about how we try to justify investment in transport infrastructure. His research suggests that once a country has a network of sealed (i.e. surfaced) roads, further investment correlates, if anything, negatively with economic growth. But corellation is not causation, and failing to invest may lead to economic decline. Look after transport and the economy will look after itself.

It's hard to sell this kind of complex argument to political decision-makers!

He also found little evidence of modal shift following public transport investment: Build a tram system and people will use it, but any road space that gets freed up as a result will soon be used by more car journeys.

As one might have expected given his credentials, he was scathing about MetroBus which he described as a Trojan Horse road-building scheme. He suggested that the Stoke Gifford Relief Road will probably turn the mile-long queue on the M32 each morning into a 3-mile queue.

Stephen Joseph, Chief Executive of CBT(resolve), outlined the reasons for launching the new group: The region needs a voice to counter the multiple threats of falling bus subsidies, the upsurge in road-building and car-based developments where walking and cycling are marginalised. We need to find more efficient ways of spending limited budgets; for example what he described as 'Total Transport' where, school and hospital services (or their vehicles and drivers) can be used by the general public.

---

At the start of the day, we were invited to raise our transport issues using post-it notes. These were grouped during the morning to identify the key campaigning areas: rail, buses, integration, planning and governance.

The rest of the day was spent in these groups, identifiying the main campaigning threads that the new CBT group should pursue. The rail group concluded that it would be worthwhile to start by identifying and filtering through the many aspiring schemes to establish which were practical and then coordinate and guide them using methods that have worked elsewhere.

I'll leave it to grahame to expand on his group's activities.

It was recognised that there is some overlap between the activities of South West CBT, TravelWatch SouthWest and Railfuture; however a South West CBT group would be more focused on future transport options and strategies than TWSW» (TravelWatch SouthWest - website), and would have a wider transport/planning brief than Railfuture.

As an aside, and perhaps influenced somewhat by Steve Melia's talk, air quality was identified as a key campaigning issue: A transport investment that appears not to stack up according to current (rather flawed, many of us agreed) BCR (Benefit Cost Ratio) analysis could potentially be justified by its impact on air quality. This may be seen as a purely urban concern, but a lot of vehicles causing air polution in cities started their journey in the country.

---

At the conclusion it was agreed that there was a role for a South West CBT Group. The next step is to formally establish it and assign roles.
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grahame
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« Reply #17 on: November 15, 2015, 06:00:03 pm »

A very interesting day.

...

I'll leave it to grahame to expand on his group's activities.


Many thanks for that  ... should help take any rural bias out of what I post ;-)

Well ... I wanted to join bus, train and "governance and integration" (an interesting linkage), which is what I went for. Turned out to be in a minority of 1 wishing to look at the integration. However, much of the talk turned to the bus bill, which has the potential to given powers to local authorities to take over bus registration and competition issues, allowing for a new frameowrk of franchised routes for the overall good. There was, alas, feeling expressed tht although Bristol itself might wish to take up powers offered, other members of the WoE partnership might shy away from doing so.

What I found overall interesting about the day ...

* It was sold / advertised with a strong "no new roads" theme, and there was literature on that topic there.  Yet there seemed to be a predominance of public transport interest.

* the people who were absent, as well as those present.  No representative from FOSBR (Friends of Suburban Bristol Railways) (though I met several of their team on the train in the morning - seems they hadn't heard of the meeting), and also missing that campaigner in a wheelchair who is always such a font of knowledge. No West Wilts Rail User Group, no RailFuture. Perhaps as this meeting was less than a third the size of last week's Bristol Rail meeting, yet covered road, cycling and buses too I should not be surprised to note the absences.

* Hearing Steven Melia talk on the hard truths of private v public  - that a doubleing of bus passengers would only cut road use by 1.3%, for example. That builing roads just moves congestion and that issues are on the local network. That a new rail / bus scheme only takes around 25% of its passengers from road.  But on the positive side, his pointing out that the 25% of "would not have travelled before" is so important in terms of new jobs, economy, helping people who were trapped at home get out (and get exercise and be active community members)

* A reminder that those from "rural areas" - however that is defined - feel left out by the urban mass and interests of a big city like Bristol, and yet the people from a big city like Bristol feel that the relatively small population is their hinterland countryside has a disproportionate influnece (and cost) on them.

* A reminder how we all need to work / plan / ask along co-ordinated lines; that travel requirements don't come to an abrupt halt at the boundary between Wiltshire and Bath, and that Frome and Rode look far more to Westbury and Trowbridge than they do to Taunton.
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« Reply #18 on: November 15, 2015, 07:37:29 pm »

Interesting argument that building the Stoke Gifford By Pass will turn the regular M32 jam into a three mile M32/Ring Road/By Pass jam.

If you happen to live in Bradley Stoke, Stoke Gifford and Little Stoke you'll not regard the bypass as an extension of the M32/Ring Road, but as another way to access the M32/M4 and will take traffic away from Aztech West area, which is arguably is a more serious traffic congestion area than the M32. Certainly for the  next 18 months the Aztech West area will be chaotically busy with building of Metro Bus and SGC new plans (and government money) to address  major congestion issues in the area of M4/M5/A38.

 
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johnneyw
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« Reply #19 on: November 15, 2015, 09:00:39 pm »

No representative from FOSBR (Friends of Suburban Bristol Railways)

Disappointing, I emailed the FOSBR newsletter editor about this a week previously.  I think they were on a trip to Exeter that day to speak to the people behind the newly open Newcourt Station.
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #20 on: November 15, 2015, 09:03:06 pm »

Interesting argument that building the Stoke Gifford By Pass will turn the regular M32 jam into a three mile M32/Ring Road/By Pass jam.

If you happen to live in Bradley Stoke, Stoke Gifford and Little Stoke you'll not regard the bypass as an extension of the M32/Ring Road, but as another way to access the M32/M4 and will take traffic away from Aztech West area, which is arguably is a more serious traffic congestion area than the M32. Certainly for the  next 18 months the Aztech West area will be chaotically busy with building of Metro Bus and SGC new plans (and government money) to address  major congestion issues in the area of M4/M5/A38.

 

My fault for going for the soundbite: Steve Melia's argument was that you can't get rid of congestion; all you can do is move it around.
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« Reply #21 on: November 16, 2015, 08:39:33 am »

He also found little evidence of modal shift following public transport investment: Build a tram system and people will use it, but any road space that gets freed up as a result will soon be used by more car journeys.
If investing in public transport doesn't create modal shift, what does?

As an aside, and perhaps influenced somewhat by Steve Melia's talk, air quality was identified as a key campaigning issue: A transport investment that appears not to stack up according to current (rather flawed, many of us agreed) BCR (Benefit Cost Ratio) analysis could potentially be justified by its impact on air quality. This may be seen as a purely urban concern, but a lot of vehicles causing air polution in cities started their journey in the country.
And to improve air quality what do you need? Modal shift to public transport, would be my guess. Which brings us back to the question of how to acheive modal shift. If a carrot* alone doesn't work, maybe we need a stick to use in conjunction with the carrot?

* Public transport investment
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grahame
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« Reply #22 on: November 16, 2015, 09:41:52 am »

He also found little evidence of modal shift following public transport investment: Build a tram system and people will use it, but any road space that gets freed up as a result will soon be used by more car journeys.
If investing in public transport doesn't create modal shift, what does?

More public transport investment, AND a system that discourages driving through pricing of parking and the like.   Example of Manhattan was quoted (and I have used the Subway and other services there and they provide a LOT of transport!)
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #23 on: November 16, 2015, 02:22:56 pm »

Apropos of nothing, here's an alternative solution:



So that's what happened to Totterdown...
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Western Pathfinder
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« Reply #24 on: November 16, 2015, 08:20:57 pm »

That would seem to be quite some temporary flyover !.
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TonyK
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« Reply #25 on: November 16, 2015, 10:15:51 pm »

This was the plan that would have seen the harbour filled in wasn't it? Thank God for common sense, which at last took over.
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JayMac
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« Reply #26 on: November 16, 2015, 10:28:40 pm »

Is it too late to hope the same common sense will prevail over Metrobust?
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