WHAT HAS THE COALITION MEANT FOR TRANSPORT?
4 March 2015 | Author: Jim Steer, Director and Founder, Steer Davies Gleave

With the general election approaching, rail has enjoyed substantial investment, with roads policy now following suit. Local transport has been less lucky – and where next for fuel duty?

It's time to review how transport has fared during the five years of the coalition government. We should start with safety. The UK has a great road safety record, up there with Sweden, but figures for the first half of 2014 showed a disturbing upward spike against a continuing background improvement.... 


FASTEN YOUR SEAT BELTS FOR A TURBULENT YEAR AHEAD
24 February 2015 | Author: Lizzie Wills, Account Director, Westminster Advisers

The outcome of the 2015 election remains far too close to call, and it is highly unclear who will form the next government. An unprecedented range of potential results is possible in what is now a five or six party system; these include a small Conservative or Labour majority, minority, or Lib Dem coalitions; an alliance of left-leaning parties (drawing together Labour, the Lib Dems, Greens, and Plaid Cymru); a Labour government supported by the SNP through confidence and supply; a Conservative government supported by the DUP and or UKIP, and so on...


ARE WE READY FOR A RETURN TO HIGHWAYS EXPANSION?
17 February 2015 | Author: Jim Steer, Director and Founder, Steer Davies Gleave

Jim Steer

The road investment strategy, unveiled in December is a real break with poilcy over the last 20 years. But have the implications for traffic growth, land use and rail demand been thought through?

Engine for Growth is the slogan of High Speed 2… but in last month’s autumn statement it was the road investment strategy that was revving up to go, with over 100 major schemes and investment of £9.4bn over the next five years...


BUS INDUSTRY MUST PULL TOGETHER AT THE SUMMIT
5 February 2015 | Author: David Fowler, Editor, Transport Times

David Fowler

When John Prescott was Secretary of State for Environment Transport and the Regions he spoke of transforming the bus “from a workhorse to a thoroughbred”. Next week’s Bus Summit will be a chance to take stock of how much progress has been made towards this goal.

In reality, the very ubiquity of buses means that they will almost inevitably retain some workhorse-like characteristics, no matter how widespread real time information, smart ticketing, and free wi-fi become....


BUS DEREGULATION: COULD DO BETTER?
26 January 2015 | Author: Neill Birch, Projects Director, SYSTRA Ltd

The decision by the North East Combined Authority to pursue quality contracts for bus services in Tyne and Wear clearly demonstrates the feelings of many in north-east England towards deregulation: it isn’t working for them. With other local authorities, including Greater Manchester, West Yorkshire, South Yorkshire and Merseyside all considering some form of franchising model too, one might conclude that deregulation has failed.

However, there are some deregulation success stories around the UK.... 


DEMAND MANAGEMENT: THE MISSING INGREDIENT?
14 January 2015 | Author: David Fowler, Editor, Transport Times

Planning rail investment over a series of five year cycles has been a great policy success. The malaise of UK transport investment for decades was its dependence on annual budgets, at the mercy of summary cuts if the economy faltered. It was a system that militated against coherent planning, not only for road and rail network managers but also for contractors and suppliers, who had no sound basis to decide how big a workforce they needed, and making it a gamble to take on trainees and apprentices.


FRESH TACTICS CAN HELP BREAK THE DRIVING HABIT
6 January 2015 | Author: Claire Haigh, Chief Executive, Greener Journeys

In the UK cars are responsible for 58% of domestic transport carbon emissions. Buses have a pivotal role to play in reducing carbon emissions through modal shift. Research for Greener Journeys estimates that the best-used bus services in urban centres are reducing carbon emissions from road transport by as much as 75%. 


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