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Issue 652 - 25 July 2014: Opinion

The automated highway
Local Trasport Today

Academics use the term ‘issue attention cycles’  to describe the way in which topics come from nowhere to suddenly dominate public discussion only to then die away again as something else takes centre stage.... continue

In Passing

  One casualty of last week’s reshuffle was the environment minister Owen Paterson, who during his short time in office because something of a hate figure for environmental groups. The feeling was clearly mutual... continue

Community Bus Partnerships: where next?

Community Bus Partnerships: where next?
Paul Salveson

There is growing interest in ‘community bus partnerships’ (CBPs) with authorities such as Leicestershire, South Yorkshire and Merseyside adapting, in different ways, the general idea, borrowing from the successes of ‘community rail’. Nationally, Defra and colleagues in DfT and the community transport sector are looking at ways in which the approach can link to a young people’s travel agenda in rural areas. At the... continue

Don’t be fooled by the hype: open access train operators are nothing but trouble

Don’t be fooled by the hype: open access train operators are nothing but trouble
Jonathan Tyler, Passenger Transport Networks

Proponents of open access for passenger services on Britain’s railway are on a roll: existing operations continue to score well for passenger approval, Network Rail has agreed paths on the West Coast Main Line, there is a plethora of fresh applications, and the press is receptive to a stream of positive announcements. It is time to consider the issues in a broader context and pay attention to the downsides. The right to apply for open... continue

Letters to the Editor

Welsh reimbursement deal shows England is underfunded
Julian Peddle, Uttoxeter, Staffordshire

I am pleased to see that the Welsh Government and Welsh bus operators have agreed payments for the Welsh scheme going forward at  a... continue

‘Floating bus stops’ – a cautionary tale from Germany
Christian Schmidt, Newport

It is disheartening to read that Cambridgeshire seems set to continue with their floating bus stop proposals (‘Floating bus stops redesigned to cut pedestrian/cyclist conflicts’ LTT 11 Jul).  Firstly, I... continue

Transport investment – worth doing even if things get worse
Tom van Vuren, Institute for Transport Studies, University of Leeds Leeds LS2 and Divisional director, Mott MacDonald, Birmingham B3

Phil Goodwin makes a fair point: if the performance of the new highways company were based on comparisons against road traffic forecasts that were too high, its perceived performance (in terms of traffic conditions) would be... continue

Make the Settle & Carlisle line useful – pave it over!
Paul Withrington, Transport Watch, Northampton NN2

Your article on the vision for the North’s railways (‘Same but different? Councils and DfT set visions for North’s railways’ LTT 11 Jul) sports a dramatic picture of the Leeds to Carlisle line,... continue

Liability law reform will make walking and cycling safer
Derek Halden, DHC, Edinburgh EH4

There has been a continuing debate in these pages about the case for strict and presumed liability legislation to protect vulnerable road users.  For over 20 years in various consultancy and research projects I have... continue

Connecting the North: look beyond high-speed rail
Nicholas B Taylor, Little Sandhurst, GU47

The Chancellor’s HS3 proposal is not the answer to regeneration of the North, and whether high-speed rail in the usual sense can promote regional development at all is questionable.  HS3 could provide a link from... continue

Rail stats don’t reveal the full number of long-distance trips
Chris Oldham, Shrewsbury SY4

Further to my letter about the anomaly of passenger numbers declining on long-distance trains (Letters LTT 27 Jun), there is another reason for this too, in that the fare structure often makes shorter trips better... continue

More twists and turns in the high-speed rail route saga
Tony Bolden, Littlehampton, West Sussex BN16

Lewis Carroll is still writing the scripts about high-speed rail! Is the curious announcement about HS3 to bring about faster and closer connections between northern cities so that they become one dynamic whole a revamp of... continue

Parking enforcement is another scam on motorists
Paul Biggs, Tamworth, Staffs B77

I might have laughed at Ray Bentley’s letter ‘Motorists are profiting from urban myths about parking’ (Letters LTT 11 Jul) if I hadn’t just been a victim of illegal ticketing by privatised parking... continue

Good parking enforcement can’t be rushed
Keith Peat, Drivers’ Union, Sutton on Sea, Lincolnshire LN12

In response to Ray Bentley’s letter about parking ‘urban myths’ I hope I may bring some historic clarity to parking and yellow lines (Letters LTT 11 Jul). I was prosecuting hundreds of parkers before... continue

Grants support 15% of rail freight flows
Philippa Edmunds, Freight on Rail manager, Campaign for Better Transport, London

Only around 15 per cent of rail freight flows receive any grant support (‘Rail freight subsidies are still justified says lorry cost review’ 11 July). That is why it remains extremely difficult for rail to... continue