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Is the Byker Viaduct the most underrated bridge in our city of bridges?

The sinusoidal curvaceous route combined with the slender concrete structure and the subtle nods in form to the Green's ECML bridge make it a truly understated thing of beauty.

It is probably the best construction piece involved for the whole Metro system. The QE2 bridge perhaps a bit lacking. However Jesmond station is a peach for some reason!

If only the Ouseburn wasn't filled in at City Park and formed a continuous route up to Jesmond Dene!
 

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Dual tracking of the Metro railway between Pelaw and Jarrow stations - Planning Approval

Dual tracking of the Metro railway between Pelaw and Jarrow stations - Planning Application
Not on Gateshead (as above) but South Tyneside Council Planning Portal on 06/11/20

EXTRACT

Application Number - ST/0476/20/CLP

Site Address - Metro railway between Pelaw and Jarrow Stations

Application Type - Certificate of Lawful Proposed Use or Development

Development Type - Engineering

Proposal - Application for a Lawful Development Certificate for proposed use or development in relation to the dual tracking of the metro railway (development to pre-existing light and heavy rail network) between Pelaw and Jarrow Stations (the Metro Flow Project, as detailed within the submitted Supporting Technical Note) and all associated development.

Current Status - FINAL DECISION

Decision - Grant Permission No Conditions 06-11-2020


KEN
 

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I have to say, I REALLY hope they don't go with the strap for the bike bays.

There is just too much potential for it to be vandalised, and the other option of the wedge offers a far greater visual distinction between the cycle bay and the other multi-use spaces.

The hook thing they proposed just seems like something to get bags or clothing caught on at busy times.
 

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I have to say, I REALLY hope they don't go with the strap for the bike bays.

There is just too much potential for it to be vandalised, and the other option of the wedge offers a far greater visual distinction between the cycle bay and the other multi-use spaces.

The hook thing they proposed just seems like something to get bags or clothing caught on at busy times.
When I first saw the strap my initial thought was kids would play with it and chavs would mess around strapping their mates up. However during the consultation I heard others point out the clamp would only hold one bike in place, whereas the strap could hold multiple bikes benefitting families where children are cycling with their parent(s) and obviously want to be together on the train, so now I'm seeing pro's and con's for each solution. I'm not sure which I'd opt for now so will leave it for the experts & cyclists to decide on what's best. :)
 

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When I first saw the strap my initial thought was kids would play with it and chavs would mess around strapping their mates up. However during the consultation I heard others point out the clamp would only hold one bike in place, whereas the strap could hold multiple bikes benefitting families where children are cycling with their parent(s) and obviously want to be together on the train, so now I'm seeing pro's and con's for each solution. I'm not sure which I'd opt for now so will leave it for the experts & cyclists to decide on what's best. :)
I think part of the thing with the strap vs the clamp is the clamp also enforces the number of bikes per space, whereas with the strap there could be the temptation to put as many in there as the strap allows - but that depends on how many Nexus are thinking of allowing.
 
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King of Bernicia
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The £6 billion shopping list that would transform transport in the North East

xtending the Tyne and Wear Metro, improved links to Newcastle International Airport and a host of road upgrades are among the proposals in a £6.1 billion wish list drawn up by North East leaders.

According to transport bosses, the money is needed to pay for a raft of projects up to 2035 and which they say are needed to cut carbon emissions, improve health and make travel safer.

It is also hoped the improvements will boost the economy, with estimates suggesting better links between Ashington, Blyth and Newcastle alone could be worth an extra £50 million.

A list of ‘shovel ready’ schemes to get spending off the ground and prepare the way for grander projects includes:

  • An overhaul of public transport ticketing, partly to reflect changing habits post-Covid
  • ‘Bus, Cycles & Electric Vehicles only’ lanes across Wearside
  • A new bus station and multi storey car park in Bishop Auckland
The proposals, many of which have been talked about for years, have been drawn together in a single North East Transport Plan.


On Tuesday the North East Joint Transport Committee, made up of the leaders of the region’s seven local authorities, is expected to approve the latest draft of the document be sent out for public consultation later this month.


Dozens more programmes and upgrades have been identified which could be completed in just five years, including:

  • Reopening the Northumberland Line to rail services
  • Refurbishing the Airport Metro station and improving park and ride facilities at Jarrow and East Boldon stations
  • A footbridge between the Stadium of Light and the former Vaux Brewery site, in Sunderland


  • The reopening of the Leamside Line
  • A new Metro station at Mill Lane, in Hebburn
  • A new Shields Ferry enter service and the replacement of the south bank landing, in South Shields
  • New bus stations for Alnwick and Blyth, in Northumberland
  • The dualling of the A66 and a Barnard Castle Bypass
Beyond this it is hoped new Metro stations could be slated to open at Ouseburn and Boldon, with the network extended to include Silverlink, in North Tyneside, and a ‘Leamside and Wearside Loop’ extending coverage in Sunderland and South Tyneside.

We aren't being extravagant' – North East leaders demand 'fair share' in £6bn transport dream
Local leaders have compiled a wish list of almost 300 upgrade schemes that they believe will transform the area by 2035 – including multiple extensions to the Tyne and Wear Metro
There are new hopes of a £6 billion transport revolution for the North East that could reverse decades of “chronic” underinvestment and catapult the region towards a greener and more prosperous future.
Local leaders have compiled a wish list of almost 300 upgrade schemes that they believe will transform the area by 2035 – including multiple extensions to the Tyne and Wear Metro, a series of major road improvements, and dramatic cycling infrastructure advances.
The government is being urged to stump up funding for the “ambitious but deliverable” project, which local politicians say would simply mean the North East finally getting its “fair share”.
Gateshead Council leader Martin Gannon hailed draft plans, which would cost an initial £6.1 billion, as the “first time the whole of the region has come together” to produce a comprehensive vision for the future.
Coun Gannon, who chairs the North East Joint Transport Committee (JTC), added: “Despite Covid and the massive economic impact that will be long felt, it is clear that the government needs to invest to encourage and support recovery and regeneration across the whole of the UK.
“We have put forward a really clear, strategic, thought-out vision for the North East that would massively boost the economy and I think the government would listen to that.

“It is a long-term investment to get the economy moving again, so I think there is real reason to be optimistic.
“Historically the North East of England has not had a fair share of national resources.
“Even if there was just a levelling out of that, we would be getting resources way in excess of £6 billion.
"We are not being extravagant in asking for a programme of investment of £6 billion in our transport infrastructure… the chronic underinvestment needs to be addressed.”


Analysis by IPPR North suggests that in 2019, planned government spending on transport in London was £3,636 per person – seven times more than the £519 per head in the North East.
The colossal list of 296 schemes on the new wish list, many of which have long been in the works but have now been compiled in a new North East Transport Plan, includes many ‘shovel-ready’ ideas that could begin imminently, such as:
  • The £40 million refurbishment of the Tyne Bridge and Central Motorway;
  • The introduction of a single-ticket system shared across the region’s different public transport options;
  • New 'bus, cycles and electric vehicles only' lanes across Wearside;
  • An expansion of electric vehicle charging points;
  • Improved cycling and walking routes in Newcastle city centre, Gateshead, and North Tyneside.


How the North East's rail network could look in the future
Projects earmarked for delivery in the next five years include:
  • Restarting passenger rail services on the Newcastle to Northumberland railway line, connecting the city centre to Ashington and Blyth;
  • Refurbishing the Airport Metro station, introducing a new Metro service from the Airport to the Coast, and improving park and ride facilities at Jarrow and East Boldon stations;
  • Opening the Blyth relief road;
  • A footbridge between the Stadium of Light and the old Vaux Brewery site in Sunderland.
Within ten years, it is hoped that there will also be progress on:
  • The dualling of the A1 north of Newcastle and the A66;
  • A19 junction improvements and capacity upgrades in North Tyneside, Sunderland and County Durham;
  • East Coast Mainline capacity improved north of Newcastle to allow more frequent local stopping services;
  • Reopening the Leamside railway line between Pelaw junction and Tursdale;
  • New Metro stations at Mill Lane in Hebburn, Murton Gap and Killingworth Moor.
  • The Shields Ferry being replaced with new vessels;
  • New bus stations for Alnwick and Blyth, plus refurbished interchanges in Gateshead and Heworth.
Check traffic and road closures near you by typing in your postcode

And the wish list for beyond the next 10 years includes:
  • A Metro extension to the west of Newcastle and across to Team Valley and the Metrocentre;
  • A new Metro line through Cobalt and the Silverlink;
  • A new ‘Leamside and Wearside loop’ on the Metro;
  • New Metro stations at Ouseburn and Boldon;
  • A new road crossing over the Tyne at Blaydon;
  • Extension of mainline railway services to Newcastle Airport.
Coun Gannon called for ministers to “fast track” schemes such as East Coast Mainline to allow for more and faster trains and reopening the Leamside rail line to kickstart the region's post-Covid recovery.
He added: “We have about 42 miles of motorway in the North East. Most of it is a two-lane motorway built in the 1960s, the A1 (M) from Scotch Corner to White Mare Pool.
“The Metro system is fantastic, it is absolutely brilliant, the pioneers who came up with that vision persuaded the government to make those investments and that is to be celebrated.
“But that was 40 years ago. The initial vision was never followed through, it was never expanded, and it needed to be.
“It needed to connect to Durham, Chester-le-Street, Washington, south east Northumberland, the Tyne Valley, because otherwise it becomes a clogged-up system and you end up with massive congestion on the roads. People travel in from those areas by car because they have no alternative.”
JTC members will discuss the draft plans on Tuesday, before an eight-week public consultation is launched.

Always nice to see such things getting attention, even if it is just all talk that is unlikely to go anywhere and the chronicles usual ugly map and all that
I've often thought that we need a proper pressure group for this given the success SENRUG has had.

I do wonder with some of the ideas here though.... you often hear of a direct route through Gosforth to the coast but I've never seen anything about this actually being worthwhile or planned beyond the line being there so its possible.
Also on Leamside, I've never liked the idea of linking up Washington by following Leamside directly, it misses the entire town. South Leamside connecting Sunderland back to Durham though is a thumbs up. Quite a mix of ideas good and bad. Some pretty attainable ones like Ouseburn metro station.
 

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"First Metro train arrives at new Nexus Learning Centre", at Mile End Road, South Shields - You Tube video

Previously covered on posts #5293, 5294 5424 on 02/11/16 and #6282 of 04/08/19, #6307 on 15/09/19, #6347 - 6348 on 11/12/19, #6412 - 6413 on 05/02/20, #6508 in June 2020

Nexus video on You Tube, "First Metro train arrives at new Nexus Learning Centre" published by NexusVideos on 28/09/20, giving interior views of the "track area"

EXTRACT

The Nexus Learning Centre is an £8.4m development located in South Shields. The first train made its way into the Learning Centre on Sunday 27 Sept, 2020.

Weeks of planning all came to together after some great team work between Operations, L&D, Control Room and Depot. Everything ran smoothly on the day.

The train ran between service trains to prevent disruption to morning services. It was done to ensure all of the new equipment worked so that trains can be stabled at the Learning Centre.


Link,

KEN
 

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Always nice to see such things getting attention, even if it is just all talk that is unlikely to go anywhere and the chronicles usual ugly map and all that
I've often thought that we need a proper pressure group for this given the success SENRUG has had.

I do wonder with some of the ideas here though.... you often hear of a direct route through Gosforth to the coast but I've never seen anything about this actually being worthwhile or planned beyond the line being there so its possible.
Also on Leamside, I've never liked the idea of linking up Washington by following Leamside directly, it misses the entire town. South Leamside connecting Sunderland back to Durham though is a thumbs up. Quite a mix of ideas good and bad. Some pretty attainable ones like Ouseburn metro station.
  • The £40 million refurbishment of the Tyne Bridge and Central Motorway; Isn't this paid for from a separate fund? Surely the LA needs to spend this. It is not capital infrastructure, but maintenance.
  • The introduction of a single-ticket system shared across the region’s different public transport options;
  • New 'bus, cycles and electric vehicles only' lanes across Wearside;
  • An expansion of electric vehicle charging points;
  • Improved cycling and walking routes in Newcastle city centre, Gateshead, and North Tyneside. Not if it means more JDS/Askew Road debacles
  • Restarting passenger rail services on the Newcastle to Northumberland railway line, connecting the city centre to Ashington and Blyth; Absolutely essential
  • Refurbishing the Airport Metro station, introducing a new Metro service from the Airport to the Coast, and improving park and ride facilities at Jarrow and East Boldon stations Not sure if it is so essential having coast to Airport? Probably be better trying to get some kind of express service from Newcastle - Interchange to Coast- Airport going.
  • Opening the Blyth relief road;
  • A footbridge between the Stadium of Light and the old Vaux Brewery site in Sunderland. Absolutely essential
  • The dualling of the A1 north of Newcastle and the A66; I'll believe it when i see it
  • A19 junction improvements and capacity upgrades in North Tyneside, Sunderland and County Durham;
  • East Coast Mainline capacity improved north of Newcastle to allow more frequent local stopping services; Hallelujah! Stations at Heaton- Coast Road- Benton- West Moor- Killingworth- Dudley- Cramlington- and on to Northumberland Coast. Alnwick terminus?
  • Reopening the Leamside railway line between Pelaw junction and Tursdale; Absolutely essential
  • New Metro stations at Mill Lane in Hebburn, Murton Gap and Killingworth Moor.
  • The Shields Ferry being replaced with new vessels;
  • New bus stations for Alnwick and Blyth, plus refurbished interchanges in Gateshead and Heworth. Gateshead interchange redevelopment is a huge opportunity, and to tailor it to the ongoing occasionally ludicrous plans for the sphincter like function of traffic management to Newcastle could really save the town
  • A Metro extension to the west of Newcastle and across to Team Valley and the Metrocentre; Someones been reading the Rail transport thread at the NE CA. This to me makes the most sense. Using the TYNE and Wear metro to consolidate and link up all key areas within the conurbation and make it feel like one big place, than LA's that happen to bounder each other.
  • A new Metro line through Cobalt and the Silverlink; As above, but with less gusto. This should be housing, and transition these out of town offices to high rise in Newcastle/Gateshead centre, or North Shields/ Whitley Bay med size offices that contribute rather than suck out life from our Tyneside's 'boroughs' economy
  • A new ‘Leamside and Wearside loop’ on the Metro; To me this is really not necessary. Areas served by this are by in large huge indistrial complexes or on the edge of low density sporadic housing estates designed for the motorcar. To me it would be far better to link up Durham to Sunderland and provide mainline services so Sunderland gets much better ECML access, and allow for a heavy rail commuting service on Leamside line with a Washington/Nissan Parkway that allows express access to Newcastle once you drive a short distance from your Washington home to the parkway. I can't see workers for IAMP or Nissan getting the train in and walking to the front door of these complexes when the distance from your punch in clock to your place on the assmebly line is miles walk anyway.
  • New Metro stations at Ouseburn and Boldon; Ouseburn oh yes.
  • A new road crossing over the Tyne at Blaydon;
  • Extension of mainline railway services to Newcastle Airport. Seperate route from Metro? We need to have a sub 20mins link between airport and city ideally or else we aint competitive with other cities
What is missing from this list?

Does Teesside even exist anymore? They seem to be skewing off on their own direction, but despite jokes of smog and other unpleasantness they are our 'other conurbation' in the region and would like to see more link up between the two (I know, its a miracle the NE so far have produced a singular transport plan). What about an express Newcastle-Chester Le Street-Durham-Ferryhill-Stockton-Boro rail service to connect up our region's major population hubs (sorry Sunderland but have other plans for you)?

Sunderland suffers enormously from being a halt on a branch line rather than a spur on a mainline. Whatever happens with HS2, LNER is likely to become a more intercity than 'get your business arse to Achievement City' people carrier and so having LNER services that have a Darlo-Durham-Sunderland-Newcastle service other than just a ECML service would be so much better for the prosperity of the city. Given the incredible transformation and proposals for Vaux and stadium site, the city needs its own ambition met.

Will a West End Metro extension have to follow the Scotswood line then loop back via Blaydon to serve the MC and Team Valley? It would likely be better to build a new bridge between Newcastle city centre and MC and link them much better. I'd divert heavy rail stopping services from Newcastle- MC- (Bensham Chord) Team Valley- A1 park and ride- ECML stopping service. This would also speed up the Tyne Valley service by avoiding Bensham and KE Bridge congestion.
I'd also have a Metro serving Prudhoe- Wylam- Stella- Blaydon- MC- Dunston- Bensham- Askew Road- High Level Bridge- Central- Forth Banks- Elswick- Benwell- Scotswood in a backwards loop to serve 'West Tyneside'.

No mention of trams... guess that might be a step too far but it was a shame the Metro wasn't quietly shifted with rolling stock to be streetcar compatible and offer Metro extensions on the road where previously they couldn't reach- looking at you Westgate Road beyond St. James!
 

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  • The introduction of a single-ticket system shared across the region’s different public transport options;
This one is a great idea and will make public transport much better VFM for people who use more than one type of public transport and cross 'boundaries' between local authorities.

  • Improved cycling and walking routes in Newcastle city centre, Gateshead, and North Tyneside. Not if it means more JDS/Askew Road debacles
This one is sort of bizarre since Newcastle city centre and Gateshead have one of the most comprehensive sets of walking and cycling routes in the North East. Don't know if they gave any specific routes they had in mind.

  • New bus stations for Alnwick and Blyth, plus refurbished interchanges in Gateshead and Heworth. Gateshead interchange redevelopment is a huge opportunity, and to tailor it to the ongoing occasionally ludicrous plans for the sphincter like function of traffic management to Newcastle could really save the town
What would you like to see at Gateshead? I think the interchange itself still looks ok. Heworth is probably more desperate for a refurb.

  • A Metro extension to the west of Newcastle and across to Team Valley and the Metrocentre; Someones been reading the Rail transport thread at the NE CA. This to me makes the most sense. Using the TYNE and Wear metro to consolidate and link up all key areas within the conurbation and make it feel like one big place, than LA's that happen to bounder each other.
Would make a lot of sense although I do wonder about the future of the Metrocentre. That said if they press ahead with the Metro Green housing then the route will still be required.

  • Extension of mainline railway services to Newcastle Airport. Seperate route from Metro? We need to have a sub 20mins link between airport and city ideally or else we aint competitive with other cities
I think a separate route would be useful as an 'express' option to the Airport. I would imagine the cost will be pretty high.

It was interesting that the Chancellor talked about development proposals always favouring London and the South East due to economic value under the previous appraisal system. That was pretty obvious when they were prepared to spend billions on Crossrail and Crossrail 2 and the North East got pretty much nothing apart from new Metro trains.
 

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I'm hoping the single ticket system then comes in. I know London has the £1.50 scheme for 90 mins, but I'd be more than happy at £5 for all-day with improved Park & Ride to reduce inner-city traffic Also id love to see a new interchange built next to Gateshead Quays. Would allow access quickly to major roads. Metro & Regional Rail connections and puts it close to Quayside without crossing a major road.
 

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King of Bernicia
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The single ticket system is really needed.
Its always talked about actually extending the metro to the west end but even just making it so someone in Wallsend can get to a job in Denton (for example) without having to buy two different tickets and spend £8 would be great.
I'd like to see this extended beyond the usual Nexus area too, its just dire how much it costs to commute to the town from Derwentside.

I have to say it was nice to see some talk about how cost:benefit analyses screw the north. I found this a nice article on it eons ago:
Nonetheless its only talk for now. I don't trust it at all. Especially with the economic foundations of the country being such a state. Still, fingers crossed.
 

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Yep, single ticket is essential. Plus, some kind of off-peak family ticket would be important, too, because those single tickets can add up - and then taking the car seems a whole lot cheaper.

I'd be curious about the refurbishment of the Airport station, whether that would re-site it to prevent flooding and/or allow a potential Ponteland extension. Haven't seen anything concrete on this so far.
 

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I'd be curious about the refurbishment of the Airport station, whether that would re-site it to prevent flooding and/or allow a potential Ponteland extension. Haven't seen anything concrete on this so far.
An extension to Ponteland would greatly increase passenger numbers on that route, as it is essentially carrying fresh air much of the time beyond Kingston Park.

  • Extension of mainline railway services to Newcastle Airport. Seperate route from Metro? We need to have a sub 20mins link between airport and city ideally or else we aint competitive with other cities


The main benefit to this would be in having through connections from other areas served by heavy rail. In terms of speed to the city centre, Metro is pretty good and could be further improved by the better acceleration and braking performance of the new fleet, and by adding barriers to the level crossings, as quite a bit of time is lost having to slow down for those currently, especially on the approach to Bank Foot from the Callerton Parkway direction.

No mention of trams... guess that might be a step too far but it was a shame the Metro wasn't quietly shifted with rolling stock to be streetcar compatible and offer Metro extensions on the road where previously they couldn't reach- looking at you Westgate Road beyond St. James!
I'm kind of glad about this. I think the current Metro network should actually be moved towards a heavy-rail compatible local rail system, rather than watered down in the other direction.

If at a later date we decide as a region we need trams, that can be a separate system with proper low floor vehicles - something that would be a massive advantage on the often narrow streets of the region.
 

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If at a later date we decide as a region we need trams, that can be a separate system with proper low floor vehicles - something that would be a massive advantage on the often narrow streets of the region.

Remember, if anyone wishes to get into the detail of "Regionwide Transport Issues" (a BIG subject to discuss) then please contribute to this thread here . . .

 

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King of Bernicia
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I'm kind of glad about this. I think the current Metro network should actually be moved towards a heavy-rail compatible local rail system, rather than watered down in the other direction.

If at a later date we decide as a region we need trams, that can be a separate system with proper low floor vehicles - something that would be a massive advantage on the often narrow streets of the region.
In the past I'd agree with this.
But in recent years I've been to Manchester a fair bit and...you know, I sort of get it.
I think we should try to do both. Have more integration with heavy rail on some lines but then on other lines have tram-trains.
Having two totally different types of rolling stock will make maintenance more complicated of course, but we're looking at a situation where we multiply the amount of vehicles many times over here.
 
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