MP meets transport chief to press for action to ease A34 congestion

The Oxford Times: Nicola Blackwood MP Nicola Blackwood MP

OXFORD West and Abingdon MP Nicola Blackwood has had a meeting with the Transport Secretary to discuss the A34.

Ms Blackwood, left, met Patrick McLoughlin to lobby for investment into improving the road which runs through her constituency and is notorious for being regularly congested.

Ms Blackwood said: “We made the strongest possible case to the Transport Secretary for urgent investment in the A34.

“Department for Transport and Highways Agency officials assured us they are actively investigating solutions for the A34.

“But we were clear that for every month spent planning investment local residents must suffer chronic congestion and local growth is put at risk.”

Last year Ms Blackwood invited Transport Minister Stephen Hammond to Oxfordshire to see the A34 for himself. However he did not offer any firm pledges about a solution to the road’s congestion woes.

Recently a lorry driver died on the A34 near Abingdon after police officers slowed traffic down to retrieve a dead badger, with the resulting accident causing severe traffic delays across the county.

A spokesman for the Department for Transport said the Government is investing in a number of pinch points along the A34 in an attempt to improve the situation.

Related links

Comments (23)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

8:37am Thu 13 Mar 14

yabbadabbadoo256 says...

this is the same goverment that are "actively investigating solutions" to the Dawlish railway problem - ie they are doing nothing.
this is the same goverment that are "actively investigating solutions" to the Dawlish railway problem - ie they are doing nothing. yabbadabbadoo256
  • Score: -2

8:53am Thu 13 Mar 14

Andrew:Oxford says...

A34M - slightly west of Swindon to Didcot to Junction 8 to Aylesbury to Milton Keynes to M1

Job done.
A34M - slightly west of Swindon to Didcot to Junction 8 to Aylesbury to Milton Keynes to M1 Job done. Andrew:Oxford
  • Score: -5

8:55am Thu 13 Mar 14

Andrew:Oxford says...

Andrew:Oxford wrote:
A34M - slightly west of Swindon to Didcot to Junction 8 to Aylesbury to Milton Keynes to M1

Job done.
Slightly East of Swindon...
[quote][p][bold]Andrew:Oxford[/bold] wrote: A34M - slightly west of Swindon to Didcot to Junction 8 to Aylesbury to Milton Keynes to M1 Job done.[/p][/quote]Slightly East of Swindon... Andrew:Oxford
  • Score: -6

8:56am Thu 13 Mar 14

gel says...

yabbadabbadoo256 wrote:
this is the same goverment that are "actively investigating solutions" to the Dawlish railway problem - ie they are doing nothing.
What?
Press pictures I saw this week shows that repairs are at a very advanced stage. Railtrack have done a very good job.
[quote][p][bold]yabbadabbadoo256[/bold] wrote: this is the same goverment that are "actively investigating solutions" to the Dawlish railway problem - ie they are doing nothing.[/p][/quote]What? Press pictures I saw this week shows that repairs are at a very advanced stage. Railtrack have done a very good job. gel
  • Score: 2

9:41am Thu 13 Mar 14

livid99 says...

Most congestion on the A34 is caused by lorries. Any kind of jam, accident or delay nearly always involves a lorry. The sheer number of them effectively turns the A34 into a one lane road for cars, and when lorries decide to drive side by side for miles, thats when the problems begin. This is where action needs to be taken.
Most congestion on the A34 is caused by lorries. Any kind of jam, accident or delay nearly always involves a lorry. The sheer number of them effectively turns the A34 into a one lane road for cars, and when lorries decide to drive side by side for miles, thats when the problems begin. This is where action needs to be taken. livid99
  • Score: 14

11:53am Thu 13 Mar 14

yabbadabbadoo256 says...

gel wrote:
yabbadabbadoo256 wrote:
this is the same goverment that are "actively investigating solutions" to the Dawlish railway problem - ie they are doing nothing.
What?
Press pictures I saw this week shows that repairs are at a very advanced stage. Railtrack have done a very good job.
Yes repairs, but it doesnt solve the underlying problem of when it all happens again this time next year..
[quote][p][bold]gel[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]yabbadabbadoo256[/bold] wrote: this is the same goverment that are "actively investigating solutions" to the Dawlish railway problem - ie they are doing nothing.[/p][/quote]What? Press pictures I saw this week shows that repairs are at a very advanced stage. Railtrack have done a very good job.[/p][/quote]Yes repairs, but it doesnt solve the underlying problem of when it all happens again this time next year.. yabbadabbadoo256
  • Score: -3

12:15pm Thu 13 Mar 14

King Joke says...

yabbadabbadoo256 wrote:
gel wrote:
yabbadabbadoo256 wrote:
this is the same goverment that are "actively investigating solutions" to the Dawlish railway problem - ie they are doing nothing.
What?
Press pictures I saw this week shows that repairs are at a very advanced stage. Railtrack have done a very good job.
Yes repairs, but it doesnt solve the underlying problem of when it all happens again this time next year..
Yes exactly - there are three well-publicised possible diversionary routes, about which the DfT is doing roughly f'ck all squared.
[quote][p][bold]yabbadabbadoo256[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]gel[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]yabbadabbadoo256[/bold] wrote: this is the same goverment that are "actively investigating solutions" to the Dawlish railway problem - ie they are doing nothing.[/p][/quote]What? Press pictures I saw this week shows that repairs are at a very advanced stage. Railtrack have done a very good job.[/p][/quote]Yes repairs, but it doesnt solve the underlying problem of when it all happens again this time next year..[/p][/quote]Yes exactly - there are three well-publicised possible diversionary routes, about which the DfT is doing roughly f'ck all squared. King Joke
  • Score: -1

12:17pm Thu 13 Mar 14

King Joke says...

livid99 wrote:
Most congestion on the A34 is caused by lorries. Any kind of jam, accident or delay nearly always involves a lorry. The sheer number of them effectively turns the A34 into a one lane road for cars, and when lorries decide to drive side by side for miles, thats when the problems begin. This is where action needs to be taken.
Driving at 56 mph instead of 70 mph is not a 'problem', it is a minor inconvenience. Grow up and accept lorries have just as much right to use the road as yourself.
[quote][p][bold]livid99[/bold] wrote: Most congestion on the A34 is caused by lorries. Any kind of jam, accident or delay nearly always involves a lorry. The sheer number of them effectively turns the A34 into a one lane road for cars, and when lorries decide to drive side by side for miles, thats when the problems begin. This is where action needs to be taken.[/p][/quote]Driving at 56 mph instead of 70 mph is not a 'problem', it is a minor inconvenience. Grow up and accept lorries have just as much right to use the road as yourself. King Joke
  • Score: -2

12:17pm Thu 13 Mar 14

King Joke says...

Andrew:Oxford wrote:
A34M - slightly west of Swindon to Didcot to Junction 8 to Aylesbury to Milton Keynes to M1

Job done.
What's the plan when this road fills up, as it surely will in around five years?
[quote][p][bold]Andrew:Oxford[/bold] wrote: A34M - slightly west of Swindon to Didcot to Junction 8 to Aylesbury to Milton Keynes to M1 Job done.[/p][/quote]What's the plan when this road fills up, as it surely will in around five years? King Joke
  • Score: 0

12:28pm Thu 13 Mar 14

Patrick, Devon says...

King Joke wrote:
yabbadabbadoo256 wrote:
gel wrote:
yabbadabbadoo256 wrote:
this is the same goverment that are "actively investigating solutions" to the Dawlish railway problem - ie they are doing nothing.
What?
Press pictures I saw this week shows that repairs are at a very advanced stage. Railtrack have done a very good job.
Yes repairs, but it doesnt solve the underlying problem of when it all happens again this time next year..
Yes exactly - there are three well-publicised possible diversionary routes, about which the DfT is doing roughly f'ck all squared.
Perhaps I can put you in the picture re Dawlish. The repairs will be completed soon and through train services to Torbay, Plymouth and Cornwall will resume. But, that still leaves Plymouth 3 hours from London (most services take even longer) while it is equidistant to Manchester and Leeds, both of which are 2 hours from London even without HS2.

Alternative routes are being considered, but what is wanted by Plymouth is a new inland high speed line, which some SW MPs are also calling for and theatening to vote against HS2 if nothing happens.

I dont think it will happen, as they will most likely opt for a new breakwater to reduce the pressure on the Dawlish sea wall.
[quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]yabbadabbadoo256[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]gel[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]yabbadabbadoo256[/bold] wrote: this is the same goverment that are "actively investigating solutions" to the Dawlish railway problem - ie they are doing nothing.[/p][/quote]What? Press pictures I saw this week shows that repairs are at a very advanced stage. Railtrack have done a very good job.[/p][/quote]Yes repairs, but it doesnt solve the underlying problem of when it all happens again this time next year..[/p][/quote]Yes exactly - there are three well-publicised possible diversionary routes, about which the DfT is doing roughly f'ck all squared.[/p][/quote]Perhaps I can put you in the picture re Dawlish. The repairs will be completed soon and through train services to Torbay, Plymouth and Cornwall will resume. But, that still leaves Plymouth 3 hours from London (most services take even longer) while it is equidistant to Manchester and Leeds, both of which are 2 hours from London even without HS2. Alternative routes are being considered, but what is wanted by Plymouth is a new inland high speed line, which some SW MPs are also calling for and theatening to vote against HS2 if nothing happens. I dont think it will happen, as they will most likely opt for a new breakwater to reduce the pressure on the Dawlish sea wall. Patrick, Devon
  • Score: 1

12:28pm Thu 13 Mar 14

Andrew:Oxford says...

King Joke wrote:
Andrew:Oxford wrote:
A34M - slightly west of Swindon to Didcot to Junction 8 to Aylesbury to Milton Keynes to M1

Job done.
What's the plan when this road fills up, as it surely will in around five years?
Well, when Scotland goes independent, the population of the United Kingdom will drop by several million...

Then there is teleportation.
[quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Andrew:Oxford[/bold] wrote: A34M - slightly west of Swindon to Didcot to Junction 8 to Aylesbury to Milton Keynes to M1 Job done.[/p][/quote]What's the plan when this road fills up, as it surely will in around five years?[/p][/quote]Well, when Scotland goes independent, the population of the United Kingdom will drop by several million... Then there is teleportation. Andrew:Oxford
  • Score: -11

12:42pm Thu 13 Mar 14

icba1957 says...

Of course the A34 suffers when there is an accident - so does every other road. But this simply ignores the real problem; the ring road.

This morning my bus from Abingdon sailed up the A34 without stopping, only to come to a grinding halt on the Hinksey Hill roundabout. You need only to stand on that bridge for a few minutes to see that the A34 both north and south is clear, while there are nearly always massive queues to get off the A34 onto the ring road from the north and the south.

The ring road is the county council's problem, so I have no doubt they are more than happy for politicians and local "know-alls" to blame the A34.
Of course the A34 suffers when there is an accident - so does every other road. But this simply ignores the real problem; the ring road. This morning my bus from Abingdon sailed up the A34 without stopping, only to come to a grinding halt on the Hinksey Hill roundabout. You need only to stand on that bridge for a few minutes to see that the A34 both north and south is clear, while there are nearly always massive queues to get off the A34 onto the ring road from the north and the south. The ring road is the county council's problem, so I have no doubt they are more than happy for politicians and local "know-alls" to blame the A34. icba1957
  • Score: 1

12:44pm Thu 13 Mar 14

King Joke says...

Plymouth is a large city, don't get me wrong, but it is not I'm afraid in the same league as Greater Manchester or Greater Leeds in economic terms. A HS solution giving two-hour journey times is never going to have a business case.

What Plymouth does deserve however is a reliable all-weather route and consistent three-hour journey times, with the right type and quantity of accommodation. What local stakeholders (eg MPs) should be asking for is things like, but not limited to:

- Extending GWML electrification to the West of England mainline through Newbury and Taunton to Plymouth
- Providing 10-12 car diesel trains on West of England until this can be achieved, by cascading from the MML and the Cotswolds as they take new electric and IEP stock
- The dualling throughout of the SWML via Salisbury to provide a diversionary route to London
- Some serious heavy engineering, eg slab track, at Cowley Bridge Junction near Exeter to reduced flood risk
- A solution to the Dawlish problem... I am not convinced a breakwater wouldn't wash away in high seas too!

I'm sure other readers can think of more.
Plymouth is a large city, don't get me wrong, but it is not I'm afraid in the same league as Greater Manchester or Greater Leeds in economic terms. A HS solution giving two-hour journey times is never going to have a business case. What Plymouth does deserve however is a reliable all-weather route and consistent three-hour journey times, with the right type and quantity of accommodation. What local stakeholders (eg MPs) should be asking for is things like, but not limited to: - Extending GWML electrification to the West of England mainline through Newbury and Taunton to Plymouth - Providing 10-12 car diesel trains on West of England until this can be achieved, by cascading from the MML and the Cotswolds as they take new electric and IEP stock - The dualling throughout of the SWML via Salisbury to provide a diversionary route to London - Some serious heavy engineering, eg slab track, at Cowley Bridge Junction near Exeter to reduced flood risk - A solution to the Dawlish problem... I am not convinced a breakwater wouldn't wash away in high seas too! I'm sure other readers can think of more. King Joke
  • Score: -2

1:05pm Thu 13 Mar 14

livid99 says...

King Joke wrote:
livid99 wrote:
Most congestion on the A34 is caused by lorries. Any kind of jam, accident or delay nearly always involves a lorry. The sheer number of them effectively turns the A34 into a one lane road for cars, and when lorries decide to drive side by side for miles, thats when the problems begin. This is where action needs to be taken.
Driving at 56 mph instead of 70 mph is not a 'problem', it is a minor inconvenience. Grow up and accept lorries have just as much right to use the road as yourself.
I'm not saying they dont have a right to use it, but when they drive side by side or keep overtaking each other, it causes long tailbacks. Surely eve you can see that ? I grew up a long time ago, and it was then that I saw what the problems really are. I guess you haven't got there yet.
[quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]livid99[/bold] wrote: Most congestion on the A34 is caused by lorries. Any kind of jam, accident or delay nearly always involves a lorry. The sheer number of them effectively turns the A34 into a one lane road for cars, and when lorries decide to drive side by side for miles, thats when the problems begin. This is where action needs to be taken.[/p][/quote]Driving at 56 mph instead of 70 mph is not a 'problem', it is a minor inconvenience. Grow up and accept lorries have just as much right to use the road as yourself.[/p][/quote]I'm not saying they dont have a right to use it, but when they drive side by side or keep overtaking each other, it causes long tailbacks. Surely eve you can see that ? I grew up a long time ago, and it was then that I saw what the problems really are. I guess you haven't got there yet. livid99
  • Score: 3

1:07pm Thu 13 Mar 14

King Joke says...

56 mph is not a tailback, in fact if everything moved at that speed at busy times it could ease pressure on bottlenecks like the Wendlebury Interchange.
56 mph is not a tailback, in fact if everything moved at that speed at busy times it could ease pressure on bottlenecks like the Wendlebury Interchange. King Joke
  • Score: -2

10:31pm Thu 13 Mar 14

onemorething says...

icba1957 wrote:
Of course the A34 suffers when there is an accident - so does every other road. But this simply ignores the real problem; the ring road.

This morning my bus from Abingdon sailed up the A34 without stopping, only to come to a grinding halt on the Hinksey Hill roundabout. You need only to stand on that bridge for a few minutes to see that the A34 both north and south is clear, while there are nearly always massive queues to get off the A34 onto the ring road from the north and the south.

The ring road is the county council's problem, so I have no doubt they are more than happy for politicians and local "know-alls" to blame the A34.
The real problem isn't a road, it is the traffic on it. And somehow 'traffic' is always other people.
Learn how to live within existing constraints, or to get around them, rather than fostering a sense of entitlement and grievance, please!
[quote][p][bold]icba1957[/bold] wrote: Of course the A34 suffers when there is an accident - so does every other road. But this simply ignores the real problem; the ring road. This morning my bus from Abingdon sailed up the A34 without stopping, only to come to a grinding halt on the Hinksey Hill roundabout. You need only to stand on that bridge for a few minutes to see that the A34 both north and south is clear, while there are nearly always massive queues to get off the A34 onto the ring road from the north and the south. The ring road is the county council's problem, so I have no doubt they are more than happy for politicians and local "know-alls" to blame the A34.[/p][/quote]The real problem isn't a road, it is the traffic on it. And somehow 'traffic' is always other people. Learn how to live within existing constraints, or to get around them, rather than fostering a sense of entitlement and grievance, please! onemorething
  • Score: -1

11:29pm Thu 13 Mar 14

Patrick, Devon says...

King Joke wrote:
Plymouth is a large city, don't get me wrong, but it is not I'm afraid in the same league as Greater Manchester or Greater Leeds in economic terms. A HS solution giving two-hour journey times is never going to have a business case.

What Plymouth does deserve however is a reliable all-weather route and consistent three-hour journey times, with the right type and quantity of accommodation. What local stakeholders (eg MPs) should be asking for is things like, but not limited to:

- Extending GWML electrification to the West of England mainline through Newbury and Taunton to Plymouth
- Providing 10-12 car diesel trains on West of England until this can be achieved, by cascading from the MML and the Cotswolds as they take new electric and IEP stock
- The dualling throughout of the SWML via Salisbury to provide a diversionary route to London
- Some serious heavy engineering, eg slab track, at Cowley Bridge Junction near Exeter to reduced flood risk
- A solution to the Dawlish problem... I am not convinced a breakwater wouldn't wash away in high seas too!

I'm sure other readers can think of more.
Perhaps you would like to post your ideas on our website NDPTU.org.uk.. I am sure visitors would miss the slow but exciting seaside ride in the Dawlish area, but its no fun for daily commuters.

We have the oldest and worst trains on the network! I agree that we would benefit from a cascade from the MML, and a better SWML would help.
[quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: Plymouth is a large city, don't get me wrong, but it is not I'm afraid in the same league as Greater Manchester or Greater Leeds in economic terms. A HS solution giving two-hour journey times is never going to have a business case. What Plymouth does deserve however is a reliable all-weather route and consistent three-hour journey times, with the right type and quantity of accommodation. What local stakeholders (eg MPs) should be asking for is things like, but not limited to: - Extending GWML electrification to the West of England mainline through Newbury and Taunton to Plymouth - Providing 10-12 car diesel trains on West of England until this can be achieved, by cascading from the MML and the Cotswolds as they take new electric and IEP stock - The dualling throughout of the SWML via Salisbury to provide a diversionary route to London - Some serious heavy engineering, eg slab track, at Cowley Bridge Junction near Exeter to reduced flood risk - A solution to the Dawlish problem... I am not convinced a breakwater wouldn't wash away in high seas too! I'm sure other readers can think of more.[/p][/quote]Perhaps you would like to post your ideas on our website NDPTU.org.uk.. I am sure visitors would miss the slow but exciting seaside ride in the Dawlish area, but its no fun for daily commuters. We have the oldest and worst trains on the network! I agree that we would benefit from a cascade from the MML, and a better SWML would help. Patrick, Devon
  • Score: 0

8:19am Fri 14 Mar 14

King Joke says...

When I said 'a solution to the Dawlish problem' I did not specify whether this was a reinforced Dawlish route or a new inland route.

I do not know the area well enough to know whether the old LSWR route over Dartmoor would be suitable, it looks very curvy on a map, could you achieve 100+ mph speeds on this alignment? To the untrained eye, adopting the proposed 1930s alignment, with 125 mph linespeed, appears best but like I say I don't know the area that well. Some people are saying just parallel the A380, is this straight enough?

That said, you'd need to keep the Dawlish route open for local and tourist traffic anyway. God knows cutting the lines to seaside resorts has done enough damage in the past :-(
When I said 'a solution to the Dawlish problem' I did not specify whether this was a reinforced Dawlish route or a new inland route. I do not know the area well enough to know whether the old LSWR route over Dartmoor would be suitable, it looks very curvy on a map, could you achieve 100+ mph speeds on this alignment? To the untrained eye, adopting the proposed 1930s alignment, with 125 mph linespeed, appears best but like I say I don't know the area that well. Some people are saying just parallel the A380, is this straight enough? That said, you'd need to keep the Dawlish route open for local and tourist traffic anyway. God knows cutting the lines to seaside resorts has done enough damage in the past :-( King Joke
  • Score: -3

8:59pm Fri 14 Mar 14

livid99 says...

More chaos and disruption this evening with multiple accidents and long tailbacks.....this road really is a nightmare.
More chaos and disruption this evening with multiple accidents and long tailbacks.....this road really is a nightmare. livid99
  • Score: 3

4:58pm Mon 17 Mar 14

downsview says...

Active traffic management & a hard shoulder is what the 34 needs to sort the problems. HGV's banned to inside lane along whole length from Chilton to M40 & vice versa between 6 am & 8pm will help in the meantime
Active traffic management & a hard shoulder is what the 34 needs to sort the problems. HGV's banned to inside lane along whole length from Chilton to M40 & vice versa between 6 am & 8pm will help in the meantime downsview
  • Score: 2

8:06am Tue 18 Mar 14

King Joke says...

How will halving the freight capacity one of the country's main container freight routes help? Our economy simply couldn't function without the cheap movement of goods the lorry offers us so why do people want them out of the way?

Doing nothing, and continuing with two lanes of lorries travelling at 56 mph, with cars and buses slotted in between, is a far cheaper alternative to active traffic managment which, at busy times, will be slowing the traffic down to 50-60 mph anyway!!
How will halving the freight capacity one of the country's main container freight routes help? Our economy simply couldn't function without the cheap movement of goods the lorry offers us so why do people want them out of the way? Doing nothing, and continuing with two lanes of lorries travelling at 56 mph, with cars and buses slotted in between, is a far cheaper alternative to active traffic managment which, at busy times, will be slowing the traffic down to 50-60 mph anyway!! King Joke
  • Score: 0

12:06pm Tue 18 Mar 14

yabbadabbadoo256 says...

King Joke wrote:
How will halving the freight capacity one of the country's main container freight routes help? Our economy simply couldn't function without the cheap movement of goods the lorry offers us so why do people want them out of the way?

Doing nothing, and continuing with two lanes of lorries travelling at 56 mph, with cars and buses slotted in between, is a far cheaper alternative to active traffic managment which, at busy times, will be slowing the traffic down to 50-60 mph anyway!!
Was just thinking it was a big shame the old British Rail closed down all the Rail Freight Marshalling yards across the country.. Could do with one around Didcot close to the railway, hmmm there is a power station about to come down isnt there??

Then a nice North-South Freight-only line would be handy, perhaps adding two more rails to the existing Oxford railway line would be an idea??? would imagine it would fall foul of the HS2 Nimbys though
[quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: How will halving the freight capacity one of the country's main container freight routes help? Our economy simply couldn't function without the cheap movement of goods the lorry offers us so why do people want them out of the way? Doing nothing, and continuing with two lanes of lorries travelling at 56 mph, with cars and buses slotted in between, is a far cheaper alternative to active traffic managment which, at busy times, will be slowing the traffic down to 50-60 mph anyway!![/p][/quote]Was just thinking it was a big shame the old British Rail closed down all the Rail Freight Marshalling yards across the country.. Could do with one around Didcot close to the railway, hmmm there is a power station about to come down isnt there?? Then a nice North-South Freight-only line would be handy, perhaps adding two more rails to the existing Oxford railway line would be an idea??? would imagine it would fall foul of the HS2 Nimbys though yabbadabbadoo256
  • Score: 0

12:26pm Tue 18 Mar 14

King Joke says...

Marshalling yards are only useful for building big consists of wagonload consignments, a mode which became uneconomic years ago. Most rail freight these days is trainload movements of bulk minerals or manufactured product or of containerised goods from ports.

THere is capacity for more trainload freight on the 'A34' corridor, particularly containers, as they are faster and so can fit in more easily between passenger paths, or rather there will be more freight capacity once goods loops and faster turnouts are built. This capacity is finite though, so growth will eventually have to be taken up by road.

We have a superb cross-country freight network for wagonload, and bulk, and containerised freight - it's called the motorway and trunk road network. This is the main economic benefit of building the network in the first place. It's ridiculous to compromise the capacity of this network by stuffing roads like the A34 with cars at the busiest times. We need to clamp down on this by increasing the passenger capacity of parallel rail services (for eg Cross Country running 12-car trains rather than 4-cars) and bus services for local flows (by building bus priority in the right places, relatively cheap compared with long-distance road widening).
Marshalling yards are only useful for building big consists of wagonload consignments, a mode which became uneconomic years ago. Most rail freight these days is trainload movements of bulk minerals or manufactured product [steel, cars] or of containerised goods from ports. THere is capacity for more trainload freight on the 'A34' corridor, particularly containers, as they are faster and so can fit in more easily between passenger paths, or rather there will be more freight capacity once goods loops and faster turnouts are built. This capacity is finite though, so growth will eventually have to be taken up by road. We have a superb cross-country freight network for wagonload, and bulk, and containerised freight - it's called the motorway and trunk road network. This is the main economic benefit of building the network in the first place. It's ridiculous to compromise the capacity of this network by stuffing roads like the A34 with cars at the busiest times. We need to clamp down on this by increasing the passenger capacity of parallel rail services (for eg Cross Country running 12-car trains rather than 4-cars) and bus services for local flows (by building bus priority in the right places, relatively cheap compared with long-distance road widening). King Joke
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree