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Author Topic: Government Transport Policy "A Big Disappointment"  (Read 1100 times)
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He who laughs last hasn't got all the facts.

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« on: October 27, 2008, 12:09:36 am »

Ten years of government transport policy has been dismissed as "a big disappointment" by a team of academics from Glasgow and Plymouth universities. Ministers are also accused of consistently pursuing the "wrong kinds of transport policies" (links below.)

The research comes a decade after Labour outlined its new deal on transport in a White Paper. Ministers say since then there has been significant investment in transport.

The new book from the academics - called Traffic Jam ^ 10 Years of 'Sustainable' Transport in the UK - outlines the areas in which they say the government has failed :

- Traffic congestion is worse than a decade ago

- The investment needs of the railways have been almost completely ignored, in particular to increase capacity

- Bus services in most of the UK have remained poor, especially in comparison with European rivals

- Tram schemes have been abandoned, despite proving effective at getting motorists out of their cars

- Walking and cycling have been largely neglected

- The government is afraid of addressing the environmental impact of aviation

- Transport carbon emissions continue to rise.

They claimed the way ahead is more road-user charging ^ but only after more choice has become available for motorists - and also urged ministers to consider measures such as the French "versement transport", a tax taken directly from employees' salaries to fund improvements in public transport in local areas ^ in return for free or subsidised travel on public transport.

Dr Ian Docherty, from Glasgow University, said the government has been timid in its policies and has "got cold feet at the point when it could have done something".

The government accepts there is now more traffic on the roads, but points out record numbers of people are using trains.

It also says ^100 million is being spent creating cycling demonstration cities.

Currently muddling along the Guingamp-Carhaix line
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