Following Clyde Metro's inclusion as a key transport priority in the Scottish Government's second Strategic Transport Projects Review (STPR2) - today's Environment, Sustainability and Carbon Reduction Committee have been hearing more about the work of the council-led Metro Feasibility Study project team and its support of STPR2.
Tasked by the Glasgow City Region Cabinet with looking at a Metro opportunity following the Connectivity Commission's recommendation that proposals should be developed, the Feasibility Study project team was mobilised in 2020 and includes council representation across a breadth of specialisms including transport, sustainability, housing, and planning.
Working alongside representatives from the NHS and Glasgow Airport, the evaluation undertaken by the project team has sought to complement the work of Transport Scotland and other strategic transport planning work underway. Taking a rounded approach, the project team has included considerations such as health and wellbeing, sustainable travel modal shift options, environmental factors, housing, land use, social inequalities, economic/inward investment opportunities, and governance options.
Last year, the Feasibility Study was significantly boosted by the inclusion of a Metro concept in STPR2 Phase 1. This enabled the project team to become fully aligned and therefore better positioned to support Phase 2 with complementary work that could reinforce a convincing case for Metro.
STPR2 outlines transport investment priorities for the next two decades, with last month's Phase 2 publication making 45 draft recommendations. When implemented, these changes and measures will play a key role in tackling climate change, reducing inequalities and improving health and wellbeing.
According to STPR2, Clyde Metro represents a multi-billion investment which, when complete, could better connect over 1.5 million people to employment, education, and health services in and around Glasgow City Region. It would target areas where connections are currently poor, including places where there is deprivation. The system would also help to deliver environmental benefits and improve public transport journey times and journey time reliability, making sustainable travel options more attractive.
The STPR2 draft transport options are now subject to a consultation which closes on 15 April 2022. The final recommendations are expected to be confirmed later this year.
Meantime, the Metro Feasibility Study project team will continue to work collaboratively with Transport Scotland and SPT to assist with any further preparatory work to support the development and delivery of the next stage business case for Clyde Metro.
You can read the full ESCR committee paper here: Metro Feasibility Study: Update to ESCR Committee (1 Feb 2022)