Comment

Our blog offers commentary, analysis and insights on the latest urban transport debates from our team of experts, as well as our Director’s regular column for Passenger Transport magazine.

Rail devolution and rail reform: Options for the future

Before the pandemic struck, one in three rail journeys in Britain were being made on services for which responsibility was devolved in full or in part to city regions, regions and administrations in Wales, Scotland, London, the north of England, Liverpool City Region and the West Midlands.

Bus cuts close doors onto the world

COVID may have changed the context for bus services but bus cuts still aren’t victimless or without consequences. It’s just that (as with past waves of bus cuts) those who are most affected by them don’t have much clout or visibility. They were marginalised already and bus cuts marginalise them even further.

Waters isnt willing to go with the flow

Small countries can do big things on transport – look at the public transport paradise of Switzerland. And when Rhodri Morgan was in his pomp in the early years of the Welsh Assembly it felt like Wales was about to forge its own path. But without that drive from the top, there was a sense that there had been a retreat into the governmental comfort zone of caution and ‘responsible’ inertia. Not any longer.

Safe and sustainable...but currently unattainable

Rebecca Fuller, Assistant Director at the Urban Transport Group (and my manager), recently wrote this brilliant piece about how transport planning has historically been built around the ‘default man’. Meaning that the considerations of many have been ignored including women, those with complicated journey patterns, disabled people, those who travel encumbered – the list goes on.  

Funding and a finely balanced future

Now that the dust has settled from Comprehensive Spending Review, it’s becoming easier to see through the smoke and mirrors and work out what actually happened. The question people often ask is ‘is it new money?’. And ‘is it more money?’. All depends on what you are comparing it with. Which previous year’s actual spend are you looking at and which projections of which spending review are your starting point?

Transport planning beyond the default male

There is little doubt that – consciously or not – our transport networks have traditionally been designed for men, by men. Specifically, men who are white, able-bodied, unencumbered by children or other loads, men who are simply trying to commute into work and back again, otherwise known as the ‘default male’. The needs of women, parents and children – or indeed anyone outside that template – are all too often given scant consideration, if they are considered at all.