Manchester’s Congestion Deal has been deemed “counter-productive”, according to Bus Users UK. Alarming the industry watchdog are plans in the Deal to allow car-sharers to use bus lanes.
The Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, launched the £240m Congestion Deal in an effort to tackle congestion across Greater Manchester. It is intended to enable public bodies and operators to offer people more choice in their travel options and employers, residents and commuters are incentivised to change their travel behaviour.
The new measures being announced include: an £80m investment in Metrolink trams; a £160m investment in cycling and walking infrastructure; and incentives for employers to introduce flexible start and finish times for their workforce.
Responding to the announcement, Claire Walters, Chief Executive of Bus Users UK, said: “Allowing car sharers to use bus lanes will reduce the efficiency of local bus services and encourage even more people to switch to private transport. A single bus has the potential to take 75 cars off the road, so rather than incentivising car sharing, Manchester should be investing in bus priority measures and offering people what they have asked for, a viable alternative to the car.”