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funding options for public transport

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  • Simon Norton
    The last posting prompted me to examine the paper. One question that came up is why congestion reduction is shown in Table 2 as a benefit for motorists but not
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 16, 2012
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      The last posting prompted me to examine the paper. One question that came up is
      why congestion reduction is shown in Table 2 as a benefit for motorists but not
      transit users. Bus users suffer from congestion in the following ways:

      1. Not only the people on a bus suffer delays if the bus encounters congestion
      but also the people waiting for it further along the line.
      2. For less frequent routes, varying congestion prevents the operation of
      clockface timetables which enable multi-modal integration.
      3. Congestion undermines reliability and forces the operator to use additional
      resources (which may be paid for by either the farepayer or the taxpayer) to
      provide backup.

      Of course, the extent of this benefit is dependent on the existence of a bus
      service on the road in question, and indeed congestion reduction on highways not
      used by buses may actually be a disbenefit to bus users if it encourages more
      traffic on this routes, spilling over onto local roads and perhaps abstracting
      patronage from public transport.

      The paper reinforces my belief that parking levies are the best way forward. In
      addition to the benefits shown, they would help to support a diversity of
      shopping facilities -- at present the owners of car-based superstores get an
      unfair competitive advantage as they don't have to pay for the social cost of
      the traffic they generate.

      In places with an active carsharing scheme, the parking levy could be extended
      to cover residential parking. Indeed, I regard the potential to do this as one
      of the main motivations to support the principle of carsharing and as the means
      of making it a mainstream rather than a fringe option.

      Simon Norton
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