Further to yesterday's post about the Regional Centre Transport Strategy Consultation Report, the report is now available as a PDF so you can get your hands on all the details. It's actually got a lot more information than we were expecting at this stage. Some of it's old news, but a lot of it's been made public for the first time.
- Integration of transport enhanced by improved bus facilities at Salford Central Station and Oxford Road Station
- Tram-style, limited stop 'Bus Transit routes' using off-bus ticketing. They'll run on the following routes:
- Manchester Royal Infirmary to Leigh* (every 15 mins)
- Manchester Royal Infirmary to Wigan* (every 15 mins)
- Piccadilly to Bolton via route of present service 8 (every 10 mins)
- Piccadilly to East Didsbury (Parrs Wood) via Piccadilly Station and Oxford Road (every 5 mins)
- Salford Crescent to Christie Hospital (presumably using the existing West Didsbury turning circle?) (every 5 mins)
* = The Wigan and Leigh services have previously been announced as using First's 'ftr' vehicles (as used in York and Leeds).
Cross-city routes, again using off-bus ticketing and running the following routes:
- Stockport to Pendleton (via Stockport Road, city centre and Broad Street) - every 10 mins
- Stockport to Swinton (via Stockport Road, city centre and Broad Street) - every 10 mins
- East Didsbury (Parrs Wood) to Prestwich (via Kingsway, City Centre and Bury New Road) - every 10 mins
- East Didsbury (Parrs Wood) to Eccles (via Kingsway, City Centre, Broad Street and Eccles Old Road) - every 10 mins
- East Didsbury (Parrs Wood) to a Park & Ride site at Junction 14 of the M60 (via Kingsway, City Centre, Broad Street and East Lancs Road) - frequency not stated
- Chorlton* to Middleton (via Upper Chorlton Road, Moss Side, University, City Centre and Rochdale Road) - every 7/8 mins
- Stretford to Ashton-under-Lyne (via Stretford Road, Hulme, City Centre and Ashton Old Road) - every 10 mins
* = although the route is referred to as starting in Chorlton, the accompanying map appears to start the service at Southern Cemetery Bus Station.
Revised bus terminus points in the city centre. Most services from the Parker Street part of Piccadilly Gardens will be moved elsewhere:
- Shudehill Interchange - Well, they're not likely to abandon this, are they?
- Chorlton Street - National Express may be asked to relocate the coach station so the facilities here can become a bus station!
- Salford Central Station - a new facility will be introduced here.
- Piccadilly Gardens North - some buses will still terminate here.
Other points of interest:
- A simplification of bus route numbering is planned
- Metroshuttle will routes will be reviewed so they complement the revised bus services.
- Other than the 'Bus Transit' and 'cross city' routes using Oxford Road that are mentioned above, all other Oxford Road bus routes will be re-routed via Higher Cambridge Street or Brook Street.
- A re-think of Oxford Road Station is planned, possibly making it better connected to Oxford Road itself and giving buses better access.
- Victoria Street in the city centre to be pedestrianised.
So, a lot to take in there! All the above (along with the Metrolink 'Big Bang' and improvements to the rail network) are intended to take place by 2012.
While all the above improves connectivity in the city, the new bus terminus points are a worry. These are intended to allow buses to start and end close to their exit point from the city centre. That may be the most efficient way of organising things, but that means a lot of walking (or changing of buses) is likely for people who currently catch services at one end of the city centre which then leave via the opposite side (services such as the 36, 37, 135 and many more).
GMPTA are open to public comments, so get them in as follows:
by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
or post to:
Regional Centre Transport Strategy Consultation
Transport Policy Unit
Manchester City Council