Presentation on theme: "Railfuture High-Speed Rail Conference Jonathan Tyler Passenger Transport Networks, YORK Bletchley Park 9 July 2011."— Presentation transcript:
Railfuture High-Speed Rail Conference Jonathan Tyler Passenger Transport Networks, YORK Bletchley Park 9 July 2011
Why I’ve been sitting on the fence  as a long-time environmentalist I hold to a radical critique of the concept of eternal growth / high capitalism / globalisation / hyper-mobility transition to a less mobile society essential but will take time and we need excellent public transport
why I’ve been sitting on the fence  demand for rail travel growing strongly and rail’s mode share rising some difficult capacity issues significant sections of the infrastructure are of poor quality the pattern of services requires overhaul >> high-speed rail could be part of the solution [just as it was in the 1970s]
But I have been on a journey … invited by Greengauge 21 to design an integrated WCML + HS2 timetable : accepted, given longstanding campaign on need for strategic timetabling not previously involved in HSR debate objective view based on HS2 assumptions delivered a detailed and credible proposal
Proposed integrated WCML + HS2 timetable at opening of HS2 phase 1 designed by PTN for Greengauge 21 prepared using the Viriato software developed by SMA of Zürich
Pathing schemes : Crewe … London, up / southbound, HS2 + inter-city + regional services Viriato SMA of Zürich
Pathing schemes : solutions for specific problems the Birmingham … Rugby corridor Viriato SMA of Zürich
Capacity challenges : Colwich Junction Viriato SMA of Zürich
The beginning of doubt  simplistic assumptions about growth trends, sheer scale of expected demand, arguable economic evaluations peculiar timescale, no carbon-reduction no previous study of timetabling, only broad statements by HS2 – my conviction about its importance derived from Switzerland (Taktfahrplan stages) problems passed elsewhere, eg. Stafford
the beginning of doubt  realisation that apparent anomalies reflect HS2 thinking (focussed on large conurbations, compare no Stoke stops) dismissal of places not served by HS2, eg. one ‘residual’ train/hour for Coventry confusion about links with regional and local services, eg. in Birmingham uncertain role of Birmingham Interchange
Then serious worries – and few answers  field observations inconsistent with rhetoric and with data about capacity (WCML RUS, sources) capacity – the problem of reconciling all the aspirations with the number of paths no analysis of portion-working (nb. both operational and infrastructural implications)
then serious worries – and few answers  study of eastern arm of Y: # no clear strategy for connectivity with ‘classic’ railway # ex-urban railheads – unacceptable ? # maximum HS2 capacity limits benefits of relief for MML, ECML # confusion over cross-country services # politics of Wichnor Curve
then serious worries – and few answers  more superficial assumptions, eg. # OOC interchange, GWML capacity # workability of HS1 connection no study of cost saving against disbenefits of British rather than European gauge regulatory regime – in whose interests will HSR be operated ?
So what has gone wrong ? 1)absence of a national strategy for public transport as context for planning 2)failure to consider alternative scenarios 3)predilection for grand projets 4)HS2 propensity toward ‘perfect railway’ 5)dispersal of responsibilities [DfT / HS2 Ltd / Network Rail / TOCs]
1) a national strategy for public transport accessibility objectives, standards of provision, optimised connectivity modal-split targets, eg. narrow huge disparity between high and low rail shares (compare environmental gain with promotion of new trips) a national integrated timetable plan to frame investment priorities (Swiss model) in its absence # limited assessment of alternative programmes # a technology in search of an application ?
modal-split targets national standards of service-quality and connectivity modelling of route-specific demand organisations, budgets timetabling, planning, marketing infrastructure plan toward an excellent system of public transport data, scenarios
2) alternative scenarios continuous growth comprehensive socio-economic collapse large reductions in mobility (esp. air ?) moderate reductions in mobility changes in composition of rail demand, eg. less long-distance commuting, many (non-London) trips transferred from car much rail freight not environmentally sustainable ?
3) the grand projet engineers propose, politicians are tempted a problem (apparent capacity shortfalls), a political hot potato (Heathrow), a longstanding economic imbalance (n / s), a shiny technology (HSR) loved by campaigners, and envy of foreigners (Tokaido, TGV, …) >> long-term, ‘transformational’ ‘solution’ excludes short-term, incremental measures
4) the perfect railway separation from ‘classic’ railway : # understandable, visionary, BUT # relevance in multi-centric Britain ? # optimal specification not tested against lesser options (esp. speed) # connectivity disbenefits # two-tier quality of service
5) dispersal of responsibilities fragmented planning: # WCML RUS passed buck to HS2 # no detail on WCML benefits until Greengauge study [TOCs indifferent] # limited study of interfaces [HS2 / NR] # unachievable aspirations [DfT] timetabling culture discourages visions
Capacity confusion trains / hour - Tokaido : 14 - RFF / SNCF : 13, rising to 15 - study for Greengauge : under ERTMS 3, in theory : 18 -eddy-current brakes, calculated risk : HS2 Ltd : 10 / 14 / 18
distribution of paths [peak hour] aspir- ations HS2 Ltd single trains portions Scotland2222 x ½ Newcastle … York Yorkshire + E.Midlands5446 x ½ Manchester other North West x ½ Birmingham4444 Europe via HS13see quote -- Heathrow3-- TOTAL
“Further work is being done to determine which of the above services might serve Heathrow and which might run on to mainland Europe” Department for Transport / HS2 Ltd, February 2011
capacity confusion – the problems planning must not assume a techno-fix complicates capacity release on classic lines somehow we have to decide priorities no credible basis for HS1, Heathrow links infrastructure design, eg. E.Mids, portions also affects Lichfield Y Junction … Water Orton East Junction
So what should now happen ? devise a national strategic (timetable) plan for routes with capacity constraints identify step-wise solutions, eg. timetable recasts, fares, train-reconfiguration, minor works, then larger works for specific problems for routes with long-run capacity constraint or sub-standard speeds consider new (but classic-compatible) alignments
so you might reasonably conclude that I’m falling off the fence onto the ‘no’ side
can we put the pieces together again ?
Jonathan Tyler Passenger Transport Networks 49 Stonegate, YORK YO1 8AW