Comment
Trams are back, and a good thing too

Trams are back, and a good thing too

Light rail networks have returned to some of our cities, and the prospects for expansion are good. It’s something to celebrate   The Manchester Metrolink system provides an exemplary case study in how to grow a network incrementally and sustainably   Anyone walking through Sale on the morning of December 4 may well have caught...
Let’s talk about women and buses

Let’s talk about women and buses

No one really talks openly and honestly about women and their role within the bus industry, and it’s about time that we did   We need more men and women in the bus industry speaking openly about the gender diversity challenges   Women and buses is a subject that the industry believes it is tackling....
I build therefore I sprawl

I build therefore I sprawl

Will where future Britons live rely on, or ignore, public transport? We should study examples of transit oriented development   IJburg is reverential to its big skies and calm waters   Tens of thousands of homes lying empty whilst people sleep on the streets, not enough homes of the right type in the right places,...
Don’t leave rail users in dark over closures

Don’t leave rail users in dark over closures

The rail industry is not making sufficient effort to clearly explain to customers how an engineering closure has improved the service   Engineering closures are often essential but they are inconvient for train users   Part of the UK’s Christmas and New Year traditions is the annual closure of the national rail network on Christmas...
Ring out the old, ring in the new

Ring out the old, ring in the new

In many ways, 2018 was an extremely challenging year for the transport sector. But buckle up, because 2019 will be a bumpy ride   In 2018, we saw the great train timetable fiasco, which Chris Grayling attempted to blame on everyone else   A new year is a time for optimism, to put behind us...
Reaching behind the rhetoric on rail fares

Reaching behind the rhetoric on rail fares

The responses to this year’s annual rail fares increase were all too predictable. The industry should consider some different tactics   Rail passengers have faced years of above inflation fare increases   Another January, another in the relentless sequence of fare rises on our trains. And another set of all too predictable responses. So first...
How can we move buses up the agenda?

How can we move buses up the agenda?

Should CPT abandon its steady National Trust-style lobbying and move towards a more vigorous and confrontational approach?   The excellent work done by Claire Haigh for Greener Journeys has demonstrated very clearly the huge economic significance of the bus   All change. This version of the Confederation of Passenger Transport terminates here. At least, it...
The impact of new ways of working

The impact of new ways of working

The culture of working nine-to-five, five days a week at the same desk in the same building is in retreat, and transport must adapt   A WeWork office in central London   My 25 years in the transport industry have been based on assumptions about the need for the mass movement of people, and goods,...
The best transport secretary we’ve had?

The best transport secretary we’ve had?

Half a century after Barbara Castle’s landmark 1968 Transport Act received Royal Assent, it’s a good time to examine her legacy   Barbara Castle served as minister for transport from December 1965 until April 1968   Barbara Castle was the first woman to be secretary of state for transport, but was she also the best...
Hammond bankrolls roads to ruin

Hammond bankrolls roads to ruin

Chancellor Philip Hammond earmarked £28.8bn for new and upgraded roads in last week’s budget. It’s a policy with many flaws   The budget earmarked almost £30bn for new and upgraded roads   So roads, roads and lots more roads. In his budget speech, Philip Hammond did not quite evoke the idea from John Major’s government...
It’s late, but that will soon be forgotten

It’s late, but that will soon be forgotten

Crossrail is delayed, but this is not surprising give the complexity of the project – but when it arrives we will all be impressed     There’s been a lot of fuss about the delay and the extra cost of Crossrail in recent weeks, but overall the project has escaped the sort of negative publicity...
Can HS2 be saved from itself - before it is too late?

Can HS2 be saved from itself – before it is too late?

As one of the first politicians to champion High Speed 2, I have watched with dismay the warning lights flash one after the other   An artist’s impression of Birmingham’s Curzon Street station   It has the support of the three main political parties. It has made good progress through parliament, passing its Commons stage...