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Old August 24th, 2011, 03:02 PM   #941
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Which in the end always balance out.
There's no point in agruing further, simply because while Dobbo values the socio-economic side of the deal, we value the purely economic side of it. It's no use trying to change how one feels about this debate.
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Old September 10th, 2011, 04:55 PM   #942
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Old September 10th, 2011, 08:16 PM   #943
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Following on from those two videos then, here's a shortened journey (as he cuts out going through Filton Abbey Wood station) of a passenger going from Bristol Temple Meads to Bristol Parkway in the West of England.



..around about the 4 minute mark is where the planned new stadium for (one of the) local football club Bristol Rovers plan to relocate to.
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Old September 11th, 2011, 04:01 PM   #944
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Plans unveiled for £500m rail scheme linking Wales to Heathrow

Plans for a £500m rail scheme linking Wales directly to Heathrow airport are being drawn up by the UK Government.

Transport Secretary Philip Hammond is reported to be in the early stages of developing a new railway station at Heathrow that would bring the Great Western Mainline and the new High Speed Two line – set to connect London to the north of England – together to form a major new transport hub.

A branch of the Great Western Mainline takes passengers from London Paddington to Swansea, via Newport, Bridgend and Cardiff. Under the new plans, passengers would be able to travel directly to the airport – slashing journey times and avoiding the need to travel into London first.

The news was last night welcomed by Welsh business leaders, who said the scheme had the potential to provide a multi-million pound boost to the economy.

The Department for Transport believes the link could take as much as 30 minutes off travel times from South Wales to the airport.

Preliminary work by Network Rail reportedly suggests that the new line could accommodate four shuttle services an hour between Reading and the airport – and could also handle direct trains from Cardiff and Bristol. The hub system would also give passengers travelling from Wales to the Midlands, northern England or Scotland the option of joining the high-speed line from Heathrow.

The new hub would be based at the airport and connected to one or more terminals to minimise disruption for travellers moving around the airport.

Network Rail were informed of the scheme only a week ago, but despite the plans being in their early stages, the Department for Transport believes the hub and link could be up and operational by 2021.

Lobby group the Great Western Partnership (GWP) has been calling for an electrified rail route from South Wales to Heathrow airport for several months.

GWP, whose members include the Cardiff Business Partnership and local authorities along the Great Western Main Line, such as Cardiff and Newport, said the current lack of direct rail connection from the west of the UK to the airport curtails economic development.

Leader of Cardiff Council Rodney Berman said it was “incredibly encouraging” news. He said he had received a positive response from the Westminster Government to a letter he wrote calling for direct links to Heathrow from South Wales to be part of the future high-speed rail link.

“It sounds like the lobbying of the GWP has influenced Government thinking,” said Mr Berman. “If we have been listened to, then that is fantastic. The link with Heathrow would very much help us attract new businesses to Cardiff and South Wales. One thing any business looking to locate somewhere will be concerned with is what travel links are there to the major airports and how close is it to London."

...
http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wa...1466-29363364/
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Old September 11th, 2011, 08:13 PM   #945
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Someone read my HS2 Consultation respone? Thats exactly what I proposed in it!
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Old September 12th, 2011, 08:42 PM   #946
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Cambridge’s second railway station “will be built”

A railway station in the north of Cambridge providing a direct link to London, Birmingham and Norwich “will be built” and named the Cambridge Science Park Station.

Plans to reactivate the disused railway line at Chesterton Sidings will serve as a link to technology and innovation centres as well as providing easy train travel to commuters and rail users living in the north of the city. Currently they are having to battle their way across the city to Cambridge Station - a journey which can equal the 48-minute travel time from Cambridge to London King’s Cross.

The scheme – which has been in the pipeline for almost two decades – has never been closer to fruition with Cambridgeshire County Council development bosses now working on the basis Chesterton station will happen and could be ready in four years.

It is thought to dramatically reduce congestion on Cambridge’s roads with some 80 per cent of the traffic which uses the main station coming from the north to the south east of the city.

The area surrounding Cambridge station is attracting record business rents for the city of £30.40 per square foot largely due to easy links to the capital, a station on the north side of of the River Cam would open up a similar wealth of opportunity for other businesses.

The minister of transport Theresa Villiers will be in Cambridge today to hear the case for the railway from county council development officers and a cross-party selection of the region’s MPs.

Graham Hughes, the council’s director of strategy and development, will lead the presentation. “What we want to get across is, yes, Chesterton is a railway station, but it is also about much bigger issues locally,” he said. "If you think about Chesterton linking up with the guided bus, the science and business parks, and the new develeopments at Northstowe, quite quickly you can see a corridor of employment - the proposals will secure future emplyoment.”

The proposals have taken a step forward recently when a new study showed the station which will cost up to £25 million could be funded privately and would return any such investment in a matter of years.

Mr Hughes said the station would bring in £10 million of fare revenue, £5 million of which would be from new rail users. These figures are based on the council’s estimate 2,800 passengers a day would use the station after three years, and would continue to grow.

Confidence about the scheme is running high in the council after years of set-backs. Last year a £10 million loan bid was turned down by the Government. “We are working on the basis Chesterton will happen,” said Mr Hughes. “We are revising our business case, we are starting to get through design plans, and we are looking at funding franchises. We are working on the assumption that we will find funding for this.”

He added it was “not unreasonable” the station could be ready in four years. “From a standing start you are looking at three to four years. Construction’s only a small part of that, say a year to 16 months, but there’s a huge amount of approval needed to do something like this,” he said.

Cambridge MP Julian Huppert, who has been campaigning for a station in Chesterton for 10 years since he was a county councillor, said the new station is vital to the city’s economy. “It will be good for the growth of Cambridge and it will ease traffic on the city’s roads,” he said. “The Government seems to be fairly supportive so what we are trying to get is a firm commitment.”

“Businesses are rightly concerned about the lack of investment in infrastructure, shortage of housing and the traffic congestion in our city. A new station at Chesterton would go a long way to addressing these concerns and encourage growth. But to make it a reality we need the government to get behind it and give us support - and maybe even money.”

...
http://www.cambridgefirst.co.uk/home...uilt_1_1016442
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Old September 14th, 2011, 08:26 PM   #947
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Major work starts on Dartford station upgrade

Dartford MP, Gareth Johnson, and the leader of Dartford Borough Council, Jeremy Kite, joined Network Rail, Southeastern and the Homes & Community Agency to mark the beginning of major construction work on the new entrance and ticket office at Dartford station.

Mr Johnson said: “This is an exciting project for Dartford that will provide a much needed improvement to the station. As a commuter myself, I am looking forward to using the enhanced facilities that will be provided.”

The multi-million pound revamp will modernise station facilities, provide better journeys for more than 3m passengers every year.

Funded jointly by the Homes and Communities Agency through Dartford Borough Council and the government’s national stations improvement programme, the work includes:

- Demolition of the existing station building and re-constructing an eye-catching new three-storey structure

- Creating a new concourse and ticket office to make it easier for passengers to move around

- Installing better facilities at ground level, including new toilets, improved retail facilities and passenger information

- Creating more parking bays and a more open environment at the front of the station.

- Extending the canopies on both platforms and installing new waiting facilities on platforms 1 and 2

- Repairs and re-gauging of platform 1 and 2 to reduce the gaps between the platform and the train. The work also includes re-surfacing and improvements to the surface water drainage.

...
http://www.rail.co/2011/09/14/major-...ation-upgrade/
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Old September 15th, 2011, 01:10 AM   #948
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Trains ‘a rich man’s toy’, says Hammond
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/d4fdf506-d...#axzz1Xy1WiF62


Philip Hammond, transport secretary, said it was an “uncomfortable fact” that trains were already “a rich man’s toy” as he defended the business case for the planned high-speed rail link between London, Birmingham and Manchester and Leeds, known as High Speed 2.
Mr Hammond conceded the point as he gave evidence to the Commons transport select committee on Tuesday, but said the project would boost the overall economy.



“People who use the railways on average have significantly higher income than the rest of the population as a whole,” he explained.
“The assumptions underlying the pattern of use of HS2 assume similar pricing to the West Coast main line, which as I have said before range from the eye-wateringly expensive to really quite reasonable if you dig around and use the advanced purchase options that are available. Therefore the assumption is that the socioeconomic mix [for HS2] will be broadly similar to those using the West Coast main line.”
He continued: “There is another point here, if you are working in a factory in Manchester you might never get on HS2 but you will certainly be benefiting from it if the sales director from your company is routinely hopping on it to go and meet customers . . . in a way that brings in orders that keeps you employed.”
Meanwhile on Tuesday, the industry regulator told Network Rail it was “falling behind” in punctuality targets on some of the UK’s key routes and that it faced formal action if it failed to improve its record.
The Office of Rail Regulation said the operator of the UK rail network was 3.4 per cent “adrift” of its targets on long-distance passenger routes with the worst punctuality affecting the East Coast main line, and First Great Western and First ScotRail services.
“We have seen greater reliability and punctuality on our rail network recently as the percentage of trains running late has fallen by 10 per cent over the past five years. But Network Rail is currently adrift of its key punctuality targets and performance in some areas is falling well short of what passengers expect,” said Richard Price, chief executive of the rail watchdog.
So true. The amazing thing is that most people still pay for it and take it as normal depite having to dedicate a large amount of their incomes for rail tickets to get to work. Meanwhile I have started commuting... on a bike. Incredibly, it is actually faster than using a train where I live (London SW), not to mention that it's more or less free and extremely beneficial to one's health. Commuter trains in and around London have become a complete ripoff over the past 5 years while the trains in my area (South West Trains slow service from Waterloo to Dorking/Epsom/Guildford) are the old ones from mid 80's even if they were repainted and got new seats a few years back. The ticket price, meanwhile, gone up by about 200% since 2004.

Last edited by Pansori; September 15th, 2011 at 01:16 AM.
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Old September 15th, 2011, 01:59 AM   #949
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Commuting by bike is not feasible for a large share of working population that is not fit, that has some minimal disability, or that need to travel more than 5-6 miles to work, and that don't have/don't want to spend time a/in corporate changing rooms at their work locations (unless one's job accepts sweat and body smell as normal).
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Old September 15th, 2011, 03:29 AM   #950
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Commuting by bike is not feasible for a large share of working population that is not fit, that has some minimal disability, or that need to travel more than 5-6 miles to work, and that don't have/don't want to spend time a/in corporate changing rooms at their work locations (unless one's job accepts sweat and body smell as normal).
I have never said it was.
I'm just saying that some people do it very successfully including myself
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Old September 16th, 2011, 02:48 PM   #951
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Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
Commuting by bike is not feasible for a large share of working population that is not fit, that has some minimal disability, or that need to travel more than 5-6 miles to work, and that don't have/don't want to spend time a/in corporate changing rooms at their work locations (unless one's job accepts sweat and body smell as normal).
They would probably get fit if they started cycling. Most companies I have worked for have provided quite nice changing rooms. I do find it surprising that someone living in the Netherlands can't see the benefits of cycling for a large portion of the working population. Paying effectively nothing for my daily commute for a few years has saved me a lot of money in recent years.

Back on topic though, are trains really a rich man's toy? It probably costs similar to owning a car if you add up all the costs. Is it not regular long distance travel that is a rich man's toy?
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Old September 16th, 2011, 03:00 PM   #952
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Back on topic though, are trains really a rich man's toy? It probably costs similar to owning a car if you add up all the costs. Is it not regular long distance travel that is a rich man's toy?
The problem is the way train services are organized in UK, with many low-performing, low-ridership services or even entire lines that should be shut down altogether.

High-speed train operations are usually lucrative when they are given a free-hand in regard of pricing and commercial strategies. At least that is the case of the high-speed divisions of Trenitalia, DB, Renfe...

The money is lost in commuter rail to rural areas, subsidized passes etc.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 03:26 PM   #953
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I don't think that applies to commuter routes in Britain's city regions.

The problem is that what the government thought would occur after the breakup of British Rail hasn't happened: namely that TOCs would have to lower prices and improve services or face declining passenger and eventually loss of franchise. However, demand is completely inelastic on commuter routes in urban areas, routes are monopolies, costs are high due to upgrades and maintenance and regulation is low. The result is large amounts of public money are needed to operate the service yet there is no overseeing of fares. It's a total mess.

What should happen is a split between such metro/urban commuter routes and longer-distance intercity ones, with the former managed and controlled by local or regional transport bodies. Certainly in the case of London and the SE, these routes are basically hybrid commuter/metro services like s-bahns, RERs, etc, only that bar one exception they terminate in the central area rather than being cross town.

The main issue is probably one of representation. Currently, Tfl are answerable only to the mayor, so if they were to take over stopping services that began in the Home Counties there might be howls from the usual suspects. Given this, it might be an idea for London Rail (a branch of Tfl) to be a separate entity managed by Tfl and NR, but who are answerable to a committee featuring the Mayor and leaders of SE counties. This would also make revenue raising mechanisms for future projects possible to implement across the region.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 03:37 PM   #954
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Not sure what you mean by low regulation or no overseeing of fares. Service patterns, rolling stock allocation and most fares are controlled by the Department for Transport. The PTEs often provide extra subsidies for reduced fare levels within their areas. Quite apart from what seems to be the high cost of the way we run our railways, it is government policy for passengers to pay half the cost hence the insane fare hikes.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 03:42 PM   #955
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Off-peak fares are determined by the TOCs are they not?

You're right about the policy of reducing public contributions (which is silly for an upgrade projects), but part of rationale behind privatisation was that the railways wouldn't be relying on public money to the same extent.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 03:54 PM   #956
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Off-peak fares are determined by the TOCs are they not?

You're right about the policy of reducing public contributions (which is silly for an upgrade projects), but part of rationale behind privatisation was that the railways wouldn't be relying on public money to the same extent.
Regarding off peak fares: the answer seems to be 'it depends', a quick google suggests the whole thing has become a minefield since they 'simplified' the fare categories a few years ago.
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Old September 17th, 2011, 02:15 PM   #957
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regarding the rich mans toy thing, trains in west yorkshire under metro are very cheap.

and if you go a short distance they are cheaper and faster than buses.

ie. Headingley to Leeds return on train - £2.60 (£1.50 with railcard) - 7 mins
Headingley to Leeds bus - over twice the price and twice the time
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Old September 17th, 2011, 08:40 PM   #958
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regarding the rich mans toy thing, trains in west yorkshire under metro are very cheap.

and if you go a short distance they are cheaper and faster than buses.

ie. Headingley to Leeds return on train - £2.60 (£1.50 with railcard) - 7 mins
Headingley to Leeds bus - over twice the price and twice the time
That's just like 2.5 miles... a walking distance if you're not crippled. And are you saying it costs 'twice' (i.e. something in the range of £5) to take a bus? That's strange because a comparable bus journey in London using cash is £2.20 and Oyster card is £1.30.

Rail journeys, on the other hand, are quite similar in London and it certainly isn't cheap for something you can just WALK in 25 minutes or cycle in 8 minutes.
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Old September 17th, 2011, 09:16 PM   #959
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The problem is the way train services are organized in UK, with many low-performing, low-ridership services or even entire lines that should be shut down altogether.

The money is lost in commuter rail to rural areas, subsidized passes etc.
Bullshit. Just because a line doesn't make a profit in NO WAY means it should be shut down.

We should shut down the roads that lead to those rural areas too as well as the airports then using that same bogus criteria.

People living rural areas should have to get around on foot or horse using dirt paths they built themselves. After all, we can't possibly subsidize ANYTHING. Profit is king, the general welfare be damned.
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Old September 18th, 2011, 02:16 AM   #960
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Bullshit. Just because a line doesn't make a profit in NO WAY means it should be shut down.

We should shut down the roads that lead to those rural areas too as well as the airports then using that same bogus criteria.

People living rural areas should have to get around on foot or horse using dirt paths they built themselves. After all, we can't possibly subsidize ANYTHING. Profit is king, the general welfare be damned.
I didn't say to rip off lines, just to cancel subsidized service. Let private companies offer services and a public entity to keep the tracks and stations (basic facilities) in good conditions, problem solved.

UK forks over £ 5,1 (American) billions (5.100.000.000)/year to fund losses on national rail not operated by local entities.
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