Jonathan Welch takes a look at two of Yorkshire’s biggest park & ride schemes, with trips into Leeds and York
There needs to be change. We need to get people out of their cars and onto public transport. That is the message from Government and campaign groups as the UK and the wider world reacts to the messages of climate emergency. Of course, CBW has its colours nailed somewhat to the mast by virtue of the industry we represent, but we also understand that public transport might not be the solution for every journey. Besides pollution, the push for reduced car use and increased uptake of public transport is also pushed as a way to reduce congestion in urban areas, something which also needs to be addressed in the longer-term to keep growing towns and cities moving.
The realistic situation is that no number of Bus Service Improvement Plans, Enhanced Partnerships and franchised bus services will suit every journey, but for those who need to drive, what about the park & ride option?
We’ve witnessed the general decline in bus ridership over the pandemic, which coupled with new working patterns has seen some park & ride sites close, have their hours of operation reduced or have their futures hanging in the balance. The concept of park and ride was introduced in the early 1970s, with Oxford believed to have been the first place in the UK to trial the concept. Since then, some have come and gone, and others have grown to be a big success. Some have served seasonal demand in small towns such as Whitby, others cater for the daily commute into major cities such as Edinburgh. More recently places such as Nottingham have added an extra credential to their bow by switching to electric buses as an added incentive to get people out of their cars.
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