Bristol Metro

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YorkshireBear

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Did anyone see the bristol metro diagram in the latest edition of modern railways? I thought it looked very interesting to be implemented in stages.

For those who havent seen it, it is listed as two phases.

Phase 1 - includes operating 2 cross city lines and one other route.

Cross city: Severn beach - portishead (hourly)
Severn beach - bath spa (hourly)
Portishead - Bristol Temple Meads (hourly)

Phase two includes some station reopenings and two new routes.

Henbury - Bristol Temple Meads (hourly)
Extend weston super mare service beyond bristol parkway to yate.


Local councils hope for this to be included in 2014-2019 high level output specification.
 
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Ivo

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Anything that involves "hourly" services doesn't deserve to be called a "Metro", frankly
True :(

Good to see Portishead and Henbury both getting mentions. I think all WSM services (certainly off-peak) should run to Yate though, and then all stations between WSM and Temple Meads should have at least 2tph (to be fair, if Portishead services call at Bedminster and Parson Street only Weston Milton wouldn't). They should also ensure that Oldfield Park and Keynsham, and Saltford (not mentioned specifically, but I would hope it's there) have at least 2tph.
 

Waverley125

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Bristol's a pretty good city for heavy rail metro, if you look at it you've got several obvious corridors for it

Bath-Bristol
Weston super Mare-Bristol
Bristol-Portishead
Bristol-Severn Beach
Avonmouth-Bristol Parkway

and potentially Bristol-Swindon and Bristol-Gloucester.

A sensible organisation would seem to be

1) Portishead-Severn Beach
2) Bath Spa-Bristol Parkway via Avonmouth
3) Weston super Mare-Bristol Parkway
 

stut

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Maybe not a metro, but I can think of several S-Bahn routes with comparable levels of service.
 

SwindonPkwy

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Obviously, there are mentions of stations reopening here. Portishead, for example, is much needed and much publicised. What the scheme lacks, though, is a line to Bradley Stoke.
 

John55

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Isn't the problem at Bristol that the GWR was forced to locate the station so far from the city centre that you need a metro to get to and from Temple Meads.

If there was a way to get better penetration of the centre then a local network would develop (or redevelop) but the location of TM always seems a big issue to me.
 

SwindonPkwy

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Ivo said:
What's wrong with Parkway/Patchway?
There are a great many things that need putting right at Patchway: parking, ticketing, shelter, road and bus access, for example. All of these could be put right but what you would have is a station still only suitable for Patchway. Likewise, Parkway is great for Stoke Gifford but not really Bradley Stoke which, after all, is a town in its own right.
The point I would like to make is this. Over the last 20 years the proposed reopening of the Portishead line has been knocked back many times but the proponents have managed to keep it firmly on the agenda. For Bradley Stoke the proposals that were on the table seem to have died a death.
 

DownSouth

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Isn't the problem at Bristol that the GWR was forced to locate the station so far from the city centre that you need a metro to get to and from Temple Meads.

If there was a way to get better penetration of the centre then a local network would develop (or redevelop) but the location of TM always seems a big issue to me.
A bit confused by this to be honest. I looked up Bristol on Google Maps and found that the point it identified as the city centre is only 600 metres from the station, less than ten minutes walk away which is quite close by any real standards. It can't really get much closer than that without going underground or taking up huge swathes of city centre land which would simply push businesses further away.
 

WelshBluebird

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Defiantly agree with what Ivo has said about Oldfield Park, Keynsham and hopefully Saltford being served by this metro service, and I would hope more than one train an hour. Would this metro service supplement or replace the current services?

I am looking at commuting from Oldfield park (or Bath Spa) to Keynsham for the job I have once I graduate, and the lack of trains that stop at Oldfield Park and Keynsham is very annoying.
 

anthony263

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I'm very interested in this project although does there really need to be a train to Severn beach every 30 minutes?

Surely a better idea would be to run an hourly Portishead - Severn Beach & an hourly Avonmouth circular via Clifton Down & Filton Abbey Wood.

Again I think there should be a stopping service every 30 minutes between Bristol & Gloucester
 

Schnellzug

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A bit confused by this to be honest. I looked up Bristol on Google Maps and found that the point it identified as the city centre is only 600 metres from the station, less than ten minutes walk away which is quite close by any real standards. It can't really get much closer than that without going underground or taking up huge swathes of city centre land which would simply push businesses further away.
It may look like that on a Map, but it's not exactly a quiet, traffic-free stroll, along multi-lane highways with traffic thundering in all directions, and that's if you do know the way, and it's quiet easy to head off in the wrong direction altogether. Besides, if (as seems to be essential) people need to be able to park right next to the shops, are they going to be likely to walk 600 yards clutching bags from Next and Dolce & Gabbana?
 

Midlandman

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In, I think, the late 1970s or early 80s, the late Richard Cotterell MEP published a proposal for an 'Avon Metro' which was more akin to the T&W example, with the Metro taking over some heavy rail lines (including Portishead) and going underground in the city centre. (This was before street running was deemed acceptable again in this country). The proposal appeared in two issues of Modern Railways magazine and if I have time, I'll dig out the relevant dates (may take a while though).

The point was made that, in the 1960s, with full dieselisation, British Railways Western Region put on the best suburban service Bristol had ever had, with frequent trains running through from Bath to Weston-super-Mare as well as the Severn Beach Line. It largely flopped, partly due to the rising tide of car ownership but, also, it was felt, due to the remoteness of Temple Meads from the centre of the city. It might be interesting to see if things are any different given the horrible traffic and general expense of parking in the area. (I always use the Park and Ride when I visit).
 
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YorkshireBear

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In, I think, the late 1970s or early 80s, the late Robert Adley MP published a proposal for an 'Avon Metro' which was more akin to the T&W example, with the Metro taking over some heavy rail lines (including Portishead) and going underground in the city centre. (This was before street running was deemed acceptable again in this country). The proposal appeared in two issues of Modern Railways magazine and if I have time, I'll dig out the relevant dates (may take a while though).

The point was made that, in the 1960s, with full dieselisation, British Railways Western Region put on the best suburban service Bristol had ever had, with frequent trains running through from Bath to Weston-super-Mare as well as the Severn Beach Line. It largely flopped, partly due to the rising tide of car ownership but, also, it was felt, due to the remoteness of Temple Meads from the centre of the city. It might be interesting to see if things are any different given the horrible traffic and general expense of parking in the area. (I always use the Park and Ride when I visit).
Interesting!

I have a feeling the car ownership may have killed it rather than the station location. All you need is a funded bus service shuttle free to rail ticket holders for it to work now a days, as you say traffic is bad. Or even a light rail system... very pie in the sky...
 

John55

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A bit confused by this to be honest. I looked up Bristol on Google Maps and found that the point it identified as the city centre is only 600 metres from the station, less than ten minutes walk away which is quite close by any real standards. It can't really get much closer than that without going underground or taking up huge swathes of city centre land which would simply push businesses further away.
It is according to Google earth 160m walk from the station entrance to the street and then 1 km to Broadmead for example. That is a lot more than a 10 minute walk and a similar distance as from Manchester Piccadilly to Victoria.

Bristol is a pretty prosperous place and I would have thought it not beyond 21st century Britain to do something better than the current set up.
 

Ivo

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Example service:

2tph Portishead-Severn Beach
2tph Western super Mare-Bristol Parkway via Avonmouth
2tph Bath Spa-Newport
2tph Weston super Mare-Bristol Parkway
Overkill. Why on Earth are 4tph required via Clifton Down?

My [current] suggestion:

2tph WsM - Yate
2tph Bath - Parkway
2tph Portishead - Avonmouth, then either Parkway or Severn Beach (BPW not calling at SAR)

We can then have the following (core routes that may be extended):

2tph WSB - GCR
2tph TAU - CDF

As well as existing long-distance services, such as XC, Portsmouth and of course Paddington.

A bit confused by this to be honest. I looked up Bristol on Google Maps and found that the point it identified as the city centre is only 600 metres from the station, less than ten minutes walk away which is quite close by any real standards. It can't really get much closer than that without going underground or taking up huge swathes of city centre land which would simply push businesses further away.
Having checked this for myself, Google Maps suggests the centre of Bristol is underwater!

The de facto centre of Bristol is the area around Colston Avenue, which on foot is roughly twice as far as this suggests (or almost a full mile from the entrance to Temple Meads as opposed to Temple Gate). There is an existing high-frequency bus provision between the station and the centre, but as explained here that isn't as useful - or necessary - as it sounds.
 

unlevel42

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Having become a recent and regular visitor to Bristol I would like to say that priority needs to be given the access from the City Cente and Shopping areas over new/improved lines.
With the station covering a huge and often undeveloped site there should be plenty of scope to separate foot/bus/cab/bus/cycle and car users.
The station concourse ( that bit where you get tickets from) must be one of the worst in the country. It's tiny, dark and dingy, lacking in facilities and I must apologise to regular users for being one of those idiots looking for information about local buses/looking for a toilet/ finding food and drink and generally getting in everybodys way.
Walking from the station to harbour area via Redcliffe(?) or Broadmead via Temple Back should be easy but its definately not pedestrian friendly.
Why can't the old station be used for the normal station facilities instead of being a staff smoking area/dingy car park and pigeon toilet.
It is so disappointing.
I really like Bristol but Temple Meads (internally) is such a disappointing gateway and yet there are huge undeveloped areas around it which most cities would be very envious.
PS Would it not be possible to re-connect Seven Beach back up with Pilning (currently a good Saturday afternoon walk)
 

SwindonPkwy

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unlevel42 said:
Walking from the station to harbour area via Redcliffe(?) or Broadmead via Temple Back should be easy but its definately not pedestrian friendly.
Try www.bristolferry.com which has a service from Temple Meads to the Centre and includes a stop for Cabot Circus.
 

bangor-toad

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In 2001 I was responsible for developing a warehouse unit in Emersons Green, just outside the Bristol outer ring road. I had to spend a lot of time looking at the local plans to make sure what we were doing was permitted.

Anyway, one of the things I remember was that there was passive provision for double track light rail / metro to be provided in the area.

Did any concrete plans ever get developed for this or was it just the usual sop to the planners to allow the massive development that occured in that area which could then be quietly forgotten?

Cheers,
Jason
 

anthony263

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In 2001 I was responsible for developing a warehouse unit in Emersons Green, just outside the Bristol outer ring road. I had to spend a lot of time looking at the local plans to make sure what we were doing was permitted.

Anyway, one of the things I remember was that there was passive provision for double track light rail / metro to be provided in the area.

Did any concrete plans ever get developed for this or was it just the usual sop to the planners to allow the massive development that occured in that area which could then be quietly forgotten?

Cheers,
Jason
If I remember it was the lack of funding which killed off the Bristol Tram although that said all the arguing between the different council's didnt help things.
 

unlevel42

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Try www.bristolferry.com which has a service from Temple Meads to the Centre and includes a stop for Cabot Circus.
..and very pleasant it is but is not really a viable alternative for people going to/from work or shopping.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Sheffield has a similar problem in that the railway station is well away from the main commercial and shopping areas and it has not yet come up with a perfect solution.
A tram now provides a part solution and so does a free bus and a nice footway...but planners/owners and developers are moving the market area/closing an access bridge/ ended the bus connections from the station to the main hospital area.
So if you in Bristol plan ahead it also needs to be future proof.
 

Stats

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Anyway, one of the things I remember was that there was passive provision for double track light rail / metro to be provided in the area.

Did any concrete plans ever get developed for this or was it just the usual sop to the planners to allow the massive development that occured in that area which could then be quietly forgotten?
Trams were considered for Bristol as recently as last year. The feasibility study prepared by council experts though said it would be far more expensive then the already planned and Council supported bendybus 'Bus Rapid Transit' scheme.
 

Parham Wood

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IMO Bristol City Council lack the ability to take a long term view about what is required for Bristol and the surrounding area. They are introducing (mainly upgrading) a few bus routes to surrounding towns to a flagship status. These will have electronic info screens and take advantage of new bus lanes. It is a quick and relatively cheap solution, but welcome. It will not provide much improvement in journey times. Certainly not a rapid transport system.

What is needed is for Bristol, Bath and South Glocs councils to get together and produce an enlightened, integrated and forward thinking transportation plan that they can work towards longterm. This would include all the satellite towns. It is not by any means easy as the area is very hilly, including Bristol itself. Sadly IMO this action seems beyond the councils at present who are still in the stone age when it comes to joined up transport thinking.
 

SwindonPkwy

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Parham Wood said:
What is needed is for Bristol, Bath and South Glocs councils to get together and produce an enlightened, integrated and forward thinking transportation plan that they can work towards longterm. This would include all the satellite towns. It is not by any means easy as the area is very hilly, including Bristol itself. Sadly IMO this action seems beyond the councils at present who are still in the stone age when it comes to joined up transport thinking.
I'll second that.
 

Ivo

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Something wrong with North Somerset (and North-East Somerse, seen as only Bath was mentioned)?

As muc as I would like to see some straightforward and effective thoughts and plans, I fear it is all pie in the sky thinking...
 

SwindonPkwy

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Since Avon County Council was disbanded (if that is the right word) the unitary authority for Bath is 'Bath and North East Somerset'. Yes, North Somerset can be added to the list and it is easy to see how difficult it is to get a cohesive plan together. Not that Avon was doing any better when it did exist!!
 
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