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Plans don't leave room for trams.

"TRAMS are best way forward for our Metro system" - Steve Howell's informed article (Echo, August 4) doubtless indicates why Edwina Hart as minister is keen to seedfund the Metro.

He points out that connecting lines for metro-trams cost much less to construct than existing heavy-rail tracks. So conversion to light-rail for trams should be combined with electrification, at lower cost for the lower voltage DC system. Such trams cannot run into Central Station but must be routed on-street past it.

So is there any prospect that Cardiff council will include metro-trams in the bid for multimillion-pound funding under the City-Deal when they've left no space for metro-trams to integrate in the Central Square transport hub? The images and map in the Echo (July 29) show buildings crowding out routes for metro-trams into or adjacent to the new bus station.

A tram station instead on lower St Mary Street would not only be poorly integrated, but would displace the buses and coaches that Cardiff cannot fit in the tiny bus station.

Of course, most buses could be run into and through the future bus station via Saunders Road, alongside the Great Western Hotel, but that would require space for many more than the 14 stands and for widened accesses that the plans show occupied by buildings.

As the July 29 article describes, all the bus station layouts are flawed. Building "footprints" need to be moved, but the council is steaming on with a "transport hub" building that blocks the Saunders Road route for metro-trams or buses.

Much easier for Cardiff politicians to obfuscate over the metro than admit their bus station plans are flawed.

Max Wallis Cardiff Bus-Users group Westbourne Road, Penarth

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Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Aug 13, 2015
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