CONgestion charge latest

BMW M Sport Convertible
Isn’t it about time we made more room for people who can afford these?

By Bluebaldee

Bristol City Council in conjunction with the other three local authorities have produced yet another glossy document about how terrible congestion is in the area and what they’re going to do about it. If they were half as good at providing a decent public transport system as they are at producing glossy brochures, none of us would ever need a car again.

What interested me was the opinion of Business West and their mayor-in-waiting, the Merchant Venturer John Savage. On page six of the document, Business West have come out strongly against Workplace Parking Charges, yet they support road user charging and will be lobbying for “clear business involvement in the development of the schemes and in current studies on road user charging.”

So basically what this bunch of tossers are saying is that the rest of us, including the self-employed, disabled, pensioners etc, are going to be forced onto First’s appallingly shit, overpriced and unreliable old rust heaps leaving the roads clear for them to swan around in their BMWs and Jags.

Oh, and don’t charge us to park at the office because that just isn’t on, old chap. And we’d like to make vast profits from all of this public money as well, if that’s ok with you?

John Savage and his Business West cronies really are a dreadful collection of elitist cunts, if you ask me.

This entry was posted in Bristol, Congestion charge, Environment, Global warming, Merchant Venturers, Transport and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to CONgestion charge latest

  1. Woodsy says:

    Having just read the glossy brochure, I see it’s intended to apply to central government for dosh from the Transport Innovation Fund. However, none of the ideas being put forward looks in the least way innovative: all the modes of transport addressed in the brochure were developed at the latest by the end of the 19th century; and, just looking at one proposal, isn’t congestion charging just a re-introduction of the 18th century turnpikes?

  2. Dan says:

    This article explain why there’s so much congestion:

  3. Perhaps if people driving round or being driven in cars over very short distances walked instead we wouldn’t have such a big obesity ‘crisis’ (reported on today and over the weekend)?? It would also lessen the need for congestion charging or road pricing…..

  4. Matt says:

    Agreed with the general comment about Bristol CC comments. If they spent the consultants fees on putting in a decent tram system (like Nottingham) we wouldn’t need this debate.

    Happy to pay conjestion charges as long as the council puts in a penalty charging system for First on late buses, naff service and fines for leaving old dears at bus stops. (Thinking about it, it would bankrupt First!)


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  6. David Peters says:

    As someone who spends time in both Bristol and London I feel I must make the following comments. The Bristol congestion charge is not about relieving congestion in the city, nor is it about emission controls as the vast majority of modern vehicles are very clean when compared to vehicles from just a few years ago. This is about the re-distribution of wealth, and because central government doesn’t want to pay the electoral price of the wrath of the motorist they have handed the honor over to politically naive councillors around the country. Unable to raise income tax, this is just another tax on normal hard working people to fund unwanted schemes that will have nothing to do with road improvement. Think about it, they could just do a carpet ban on cars in the centre and only allow commercial vehicles and buses in, but this would not raise the cash.

    All the zones and plans for Bristols charge are in place, and it’s a matter of when and not if. So, what’s to be done? Well, I would suggest to people that based on the London model records should start being made of all traffic light phasing on the approaches to the city, as they would most likely be altered to slow the traffic flow for a period prior to the introduction of the charge. The same vigilance should also be applied to a unusually large amount of road works and traffic cone ‘experiments’, as they would also be magically completed just prior to introduction. Upon introduction of the charge, with road works completed and traffic lights being set to normal phasing again, the traffic would throw smoothly giving the impression that the charge has been marvelous for all concerned. Never mind the fact it was also half-term…

    Now let’s look at the reality. The traffic in the city centre would initially see a small decrease, whilst the roads around the boundary of the zone would take the excess traffic unwilling to pay. People with businesses just inside the zone dependent on passing traffic would go out of business, families with children at school in the zone would be forced to pay the charge or send their 5 year old kids to school on a unreliable and expensive bus service, shops selling larger items that require picking up by car would see their business taken away from them by out of town shopping malls. Then, because this is operated by people who don’t live in the real world, after a very short time indeed there would be a 60% increase in the charge fee and a threat to charge £25.00 a day if you own a larger car, just as London has had to endure. The new shopping centre in the heart of Bristol would be simply too expensive to go shopping in, and if you combine the charge with any possible economic downturn the end result is quite simple for anyone trading in the city.

    Like London, it would free the roads up for plenty of very nice expensive Porsches and Mercedes, as to these people a fee of a few quid would be worth it just to get everybody else out of the equation. They wouldn’t even notice the fee, even though like you and I, they already pay for a tax disc and the tax from petrol. People in the zone would also pay a further fee on top of their road tax for the crime of owning a car inside it (though, graciously, they may give give you a little discount).

    I find it fascinating that in a democracy where 75% of people say they don’t want something, they end up getting it anyway. It’s all the more disgraceful coming from people who call themselves democrats. Bristol has the worst graffiti and drug/drink abuse I’ve seen in this country. To be blunt, I think the council has more serious issues to deal with than the introduction of a unfair punitive tax that the majority of people don’t want and will most likely cost them their jobs in any local election. Unlike all other cities in the UK, you have to pay to park in Bristol until midnight (as opposed to 6pm or thereabouts) so the council are already shafting the motorist. How long before a proposed blanket 20 mph speed limit in Bristol (as Southwark Council in London have proposed for their borough) will be suggested on top of all this?

    I think it’s about time we had a referendum on only allowing people who’ve held down jobs in the real world to enter politics, though I should imagine that like any public consultation involving motorists it would be ignored.

  7. Mr. Unpopular says:

    Shock horror! Government and business to make money out of problem rather than actually solve it!

    Now you know how non-motorists feel, living in a world which revolves around car users and their wants. Get on your pushbikes or buy a cheap battery vehicle, you can get battery bikes for £200 second hand so there’s no excuse. You could probably do with the exercise after years of sitting around behind the wheel.

    Need I add that driving cars is incredibly antisocial, dangerous and selfish in a world where increasinly fuel-hungry vehicles chug away at the last of the oil, accident victims clog up hospitals and our boys have to dodge bullets every day and commit unspeakable atrocities keep the juice running?

  8. David Peters says:

    Well Mr Unpopular, some peoples careers wouldn’t really be supported by travelling the country on a £200 secondhand battery powered bike, and those soldiers are out in these god forsaken places paying with their lives to defend the freedom and democracy that you enjoy, whilst I (no doubt) pay for your benefit cheque. Get back to the 6th form debate room where you belong with your cliche student/leftie views, your contribution just makes embarrassing reading.

  9. Mr Waits says:

    David Peters, who’s being cliched here? There are at least three in your poorly constructed paragraph/sentence. The fact is that Bristol has some of the worst traffic problems I’ve seen. Taking the bus from one side to the other in time for work is impossible, despite the bus lanes making it far easier to walk the 30/40minutes to work than attempt a motorised commute! Commuter traffic coming into Bristol seems to be largely responsible for the chaos on the roads. Not needing to use the roads by car myself, this whole issue of gridlocked streets in Bristol doesn’t directly affect me, however I would like to point out that it is not just roads clogged with cars that is getting out of hand. Travelling from Bedminster across the Avon and docks as a pedestrian is a bit of a joke. Most walkways are barely wide enough for one person at a time making it necessary to walk in the road, which were it not for the slow moving congested traffic might be considered a bit dangerous. Quite frankly, Bristol needs to seriously look at it’s disastrous town planning and figure out how to fix it without too many of these glossy brochures with fancy phrases that don’t really mean much.
    Here’s a few ideas:
    1)More footbridges across the main roads which would mean the traffic could move more freely.
    2)More crossings for traffic over the Avon so that it doesn’t have to get jammed up in bottle necks at either Ashton gate, or Temple Meads.
    3) A decent bridge to cross the docks outside the Arnolfini, and a new bridge to cross the Avon outside the Louisana on Cumberland Road. This would make it easier for pedestrians crossing the docks, and also let public transport cross into Bedminster easier than getting stuck around the bridges at the bottom of Bedminster Parade.
    4) Potentially ban cars (yes BAN them) from entering within 2 miles of the center of Bristol between the hours of 7am and 10am, instead use park and ride.
    5) Trams!

    So how’s that David Peters? Too cliched for you? Admit it, it’d work. Bristol has apparently reached capacity, and needs something pretty drastic to sort itself out.

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