Monday, October 20, 2008

Transport Committee

Just catching up on last week's transport committee which agreed the future work programme and examined the thorny issue of train overcrowding.

20 mph Zones

Some boroughs reportedly want to introduce 20mph zones for all their roads - Lewisham is a prime suspect - but TfL won't provide them with the money. To have some boroughs adopt this whilst others make no changes seems crazy to me, actually I can't see why anyone would want to do it, because getting from A to B takes long enough now, but Jenny Jones is going to do an investigation into the possibilities. That is a bit like asking Dracula to investigate vegetarianism, but we await her conclusions with interest...

Cross River Tram

The report on last month's hearing was agreed by majority although the committee did note that the Conservative group think it is an unduly expensive scheme, probably unaffordable in the current financial climate, even if TfL does get its money back from Iceland.

Train Overcrowding

The committee heard from passenger representatives on suggestions to beat overcrowding on main line routes. The problem is particularly bad south of the river in places where the tubes don't go. One suggestion is to stop more of the express trains at inner London stations, which would help to spread the load but would slow the network down. Another idea is to abolish first class for commuter - as opposed to inter city - services. This seems like a good idea to me, as hardly anyone uses the first class sections whilst the rest of the train is like a sardine can. Often the only people in first class seem to be fare dodgers and other anti socials who see it as a way to raise two fingers to the rest of us.

we will be hearing from train operators next month.

Oxford Street

Victoria Borwick has asked to do a piece of work on the 'bus jam' in Oxford Street, looking at ways to free up road space and improve service times. This is not an easy problem to solve, but rerouting some services and turning others at each end of the street should be considered.


morris hickey said...

Those of us old enough to remember trams running in parts of London other than Croydon are convinced that projects like the cross-river tram MUST go ahead if we are ever to break the vicious circle of car-bus-car-bus and the conflict between the two.

As a regular visitor to places that have modern trams, with appropriate traffic priority measures, I need no convincing of their value and ability to transport large numbers of people in comfort and safety. My most recent experience this year riding trams in Tenerife enabled me to travel quickly and in comfort in a conurbation that had previously been a serious competitor for the title of worst air-polluted traffic jam I had ever experienced. And later in Lisbon the smooth and efficient (although now somewhat limited) trams were a comfortable way of gaining an overview of parts of the city that would not have been possible on the far less comfortable diseasal buses.

Wake up TfL - stop ignoring the solutions that stare you in the face.

Roger Evans said...

I had no idea there were trams in Tenerife...

morris hickey said...

Not ANOTHER fact-finding trip????

Roger Evans said...

Good idea! I imagine it is best viewed in the summer months.