Bath & North East Somerset Council has undertaken a preliminary study in response to suggestions from the public to look at the potential for a sustainable light rail tram system.
The study says ‘strategic evidence shows there is a demand for public transport solutions in Bath.’ It identifies four key corridors where more detailed analysis would be required, including costings and impacts on other traffic movements, before a decision can be made on whether or not a light rail system is feasible..
The four corridors, are the A367 Odd Down, the A4/A36 Newbridge, Lansdown and the A4 from the Lambridge area.
Council leader, Councillor Tim Warren (Conservative Mendip), said: “I want to stress this is a preliminary study. It is an initial look to see what demand there is for a light rail system and what routes could be feasible in the city.
“We all know the need to tackle congestion and improve transport is a major issue in Bath and we have to consider every option which could form part of a wider transport strategy for future generations.”
Councillor Mark Shelford, (Conservative Lyncombe), cabinet member for Transport and Environment, said: “This is an early-stage study which in general terms simply sets out various tram routes which each have benefits and disadvantages based on demand, environment and current road use. It will help us understand what the potential is for a light rail system and whether we should look more closely at it as one option in a wider transport plan for the city.”
The study, which goes before Community, Transport & Environment Scrutiny Panel on January 22 says any tram system would require a ‘mode’ shift from car drivers as well as addressing issues around the environment, road space, on-street parking, vaults and utilities.
In addition, there would need to be very careful consideration and detailed work around operating costs, passenger forecasting, construction costs and the wider economic benefits of a light rail system.
The full report is available to view here.