die belebende Bedenkung

Vote no to mayor, get mayor

with 2 comments

George's £400 million photo opportunity

George’s £400 million photo opportunity

In 2012, voters in the city of Manchester voted against a directly elected mayor. But during his visit to the city on 3 October 2014, chancellor George Osborne announced his plans for Greater Manchester devolution will impose a directly elected ‘metro mayor’ with powers over housing, transport, planning and policing.

Mr Osborne also praised the new Metrolink route to Manchester airport — which takes 45 minutes to cover just 15 kilometres — and confirmed that another tram line, to Trafford, is to go ahead, supported by a grant of £350 million. Doubtless TfGM’s increased powers will be essential to ‘moderate’ bus competition against Metrolink, and cover its future operating losses.

The £750 million cost of the Trafford and airport tramways would surely have been better spent on improving heavy rail in the region, such as the Cheshire Lines route between Manchester, Warrington, and Liverpool, and electrification of the Caldervale Trans-pennine route.

What’s next? ‘Vote no to congestion charge, get congestion charge’, perhaps.


Written by beleben

November 4, 2014 at 5:21 pm

2 Responses

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  1. Just heard on the news that there is a plan for a ‘West Midlands’ mayor. Both Cov and Brum voted against mayors last year, and the idea of bunging the whole region together will send shivers down the spines of everyone outside Birmingham

    Joe Rukin

    November 5, 2014 at 9:09 am

  2. I thought the congestion charge referendum was proposed because the government told Manchester that it would only get big money for transport improvements if it voted Yes. Although there was a No vote Manchester still got the money (or at least a significant sum) to spend on extending its tramway network. Edinburgh also voted No to a congestion charge and they still got the money from somewhere to spend on their tram system. Nottingham is getting its tramway system extended after it imposed its Workplace Parking Levy. But who knows if it would have still got the money without the levy.


    November 5, 2014 at 10:57 am

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