Sunday, September 11, 2011

Buses & Bollards

  Visited two quite different towns - Crawley (pop. 100,000), a new town south of London developed post-War initially to take population overspill, and now the gateway to and service centre for Gatwick Airport; and Bournemouth (pop. 160,000), on the south coast settled as a tourist centre in Victorian times with 20,000 hotel beds.
  Both towns (can't be called cities because neither have 'royal warrants') are well-connected to London and other regional centres by passenger rail, and have bus services that would put any medium NZ city to shame.
  However, what I was looking at was the impressive 'Fastway' Bus Rapid Transit system in Crawley, linking all major areas in that town, the major emplyment focus of Gatwick and the smaller nearby centre of Horley (20,000). 'Guided' buses run on a combination of separated bus tracks, standard bus lanes and ordinary sections of road, coupled with bus-only priority measures at most intersections - meaning buses are pretty much the fastest and most reliable means of transport in the area, and sharply reduce the need for parking provision - especially the congested Gatwick airport precinct.
  In Bournemouth, the innovations I viewed were the 20mph (30kph) speed zones and the associated traffic calming measures in residential streets [see photo of kid-shaped bollard decked out in the local school uniform]. In order top slow traffic down and reduce the attractiveness of some wider streets as 'rat runs' physical choking of the street to one lane only is built in - very effectively.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Dave,
    Good to see you are still politically active and pushing the right messages. Janice and I are In NZ and saw your blog. We would like to catch up? Heading to Auckland for the game. Ring me 0429814382
    David Roberts & Janice Brown