PTEs urge Government to seize decentralisation opportunity
Government must work proactively with PTEs and other local transport authorities to achieve rail decentralisation successfully, according to pteg (the Passenger Transport Executive Group). This could see improved rail services in the north and midlands, responsive to local need.
In its response to the Government consultation on decentralisation, pteg recommends that this requires more than a simple re-badging of current powers, such as being a cosignatory to rail franchises, and claims decentralisation will only work on the basis of a fair deal on costs and risks.
Upfront investment will also be required to unlock long-term efficiencies, in particular the rolling stock in the north.
Chair of pteg, Geoff Inskip, said: “More local control over local rail services – instead of remote control fromWhitehall– will make those services more responsive to local need and passengers’ views. It can also open the way to better integration with tram and bus, and ultimately for London-style, smart and simple ticketing across all forms of big city public transport networks.
“Rail devolution is working right now on Merseyrail Electrics and London Overground. Routes that were near the bottom of the table for passenger satisfaction are now nearer the top. We now want to work with the Government to extend the benefits of devolution to rail passengers right across the Metropolitan areas and beyond.”
The full pteg response can be found at: www.pteg.net/Publications/ConsultationResponses/DfT
Rail devolution was discussed in detail at the recent ‘Devolving Rail to the Regions’ event at ManchesterTown Hall. There is a detailed report from this event in the June/July 2012 edition of Rail Technology Magazine. Rail professionals can subscribe for free at www.railtechnologymagazine.com/subscribe
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