West of England Joint Transport Study

Possible transport solutions

We want to hear your views on how to address the transport issues we face as an area.

We have drawn up a number of possible concepts for discussion and consultation - 13 are set out below. These are made up of packages of schemes which aim to help achieve the draft objectives and tackle the issues of the West of England.

Do you agree with these? Which do you think will make the most difference to improving local transport? What other ideas and possible solutions do you have?

#1. Strengthen and enhance public transport corridors

Improve public transport corridors both in urban areas and between settlements. For instance; new railway stations, bigger station car parks, new park and ride sites, public transport interchanges, and better ticketing and information.

Issues: Time and cost required to improve rail infrastructure, reduction in highway capacity, parking and loading along main roads in order to improve bus reliability.

#2. Extended MetroBus network

Build on our emerging Bus Rapid Transit network with more MetroBus routes, potentially including new routes to eastern Bristol, orbital connections, and extensions to North Somerset towns.

Issues: Loss of green corridors, highway capacity, parking and loading on main road corridors.

#3. Extend MetroWest

Further improvements to the MetroWest rail concept which could improve the Henbury line, new rail line re-openings, and more capacity between Bristol and Bath and to South Wales.

Issues: Would include significant time and cost required to make improvements to rail infrastructure.

#4. MetroWest ++

This would be a significant and ambitious upgrade to the local rail network which could make it more akin to a metro or 'tram-train' network, and may include new and re-opened routes along with wholesale electrification.

Issues: The time required to make improvements to rail infrastructure. Such ambition may be unaffordable.

#5. Walking and cycling superhighways

Building on the already high levels of walking and cycling in parts of the area is likely to be highly cost-effective and reduce conflict between people who are cycling and walking. A network of cycling super-highways and better walking routes could be built across the main urban areas and along main corridors.

Issues: Potential reduction in highway capacity, parking and loading along main roads in order to improve walking and cycling routes.

#6. Better connectivity

Tackling a key weakness in the current network, new links could be built to take pressure off key points in the network and remove through-traffic from city centres and inappropriate residential roads.

Issues: Loss of green field land to build infrastructure.

#7. Pinch points and bottlenecks

Intervention to mitigate pressure at key local pinch points such as the A4 at West Town Lane, A4174 ring road junctions, A370 at Backwell, and A37 at Whitchurch amongst others.

Issues: Costs involved in finding and building solutions to deal with these pinch points. Public acceptance for new routes.

#8. Strategic corridor packages

Whole corridor approaches to improving main highway corridors such as the A4 and A38, which could include improved environments for pedestrians and cyclists, linked signals and bus priority.

Issues: Potential reduction in parking and loading along main roads in order to improve traffic flow and bus priority.

#9. Working better together

Closer integration between the local authorities, de-trunking of highway routes to allow for local control and bus franchising which could contribute towards improving services and regulatory regimes.

Issues: Limited by national policy and regulations and requires influencing stakeholders such as national government.

#10. Local Sustainable Transport Fund

Building on the success of this programme to improve journey choices: this would offer information and work with employers, schools and communities to make small changes in local areas to prompt behavioural change and other initiatives, including smart and multi-modal ticketing, wider use of broadband and home working, and shared mobility such as public cycle hire, car sharing and car clubs.

Issues: Would rely on revenue funding, which is increasingly limited.

#11. Regional connectivity

Better links to London, South Wales and the Midlands by road and rail.

Issues: Would require the influencing of stakeholders such as Highways England and national government to improve regional links.

#12. Freight

The local freight consolidation service used by the local authorities can help tackle freight, along with low emission zones, HGV restrictions and routing changes, as well as improved routes and parking facilities to reduce HGV impact on local communities.

Issues: Would rely on increasingly limited revenue funding, and would require enforcement.

#13. Travel demand management

Would not only act as a driver for change but as a potential income stream to help pay for transport investment. This could include more residents parking, workplace parking levy, congestion charging, or a reduction in parking levels in the main settlements.

Issues: Public acceptance.

By Penny Adams 2 years ago