Rail Industry Focus

26.09.19

Andy Burnham reveals plans for a transformed ‘London style’ rail system for Greater Manchester

The Mayor of Greater Manchester has today announced his bold new masterplan for a ‘London style’ transport system of integrated train journeys and multi-modal zonal ticketing.

Launching the plans today, Andy Burnham expressed his concerns that ‘poor performance’ in the North was resulting in people choosing to take their cars instead of ‘expensive and unreliable’ public transport that currently doesn’t represent good value for money.

With climate change targets a priority for local councils, the mayor wants to make sure that transport in Greater Manchester is reliable, affordable, sustainable, accessible and accountable.

Speaking at the Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) event this morning, Burnham outlined his ambitions to double the number of daily rail passengers to 200,000 by 2040 and triple the use of Metrolink across the wider city-region.

He emphasised the need for devolved power for local councils and plans to “rebuild trust through a more locally accountable system,” something which is not possible at the moment due to a lack of devolved powers.

Burnham plans to call on the Government for the same revenue subsidy that was afforded to Transport for London to undertake the drastic change to the current system.

TfGM has found that locally accountable rail services such as Metrolink deliver more reliable and frequent services compared to nationally run rail franchises. Less than 1% of Metrolink services are cancelled and over 90% arrive on time.

When you compare this to less than 60% of Northern services running on time, it supports the call for more local responsibility.

Burnham said: “Performance figures continue to reiterate when I have made clear for a long time – that the rail network is letting down Greater Manchester’s passengers and businesses. I have heard too many stories of people who have given up on trains because they just can’t rely on them to get them to work on time.”

IMG 3230

‘Our prospectus, our place, our network’ was the message in the plan developed by TfGM on behalf on the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), as they launched their 10-year plan for improved customer experience across all transport types.

GMCA will be publishing papers on Friday 27 September about the next stage of the Bus Reform process.

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