Wisbech transport strategy demands improvement to 'poor' public transport

PUBLISHED: 08:57 07 March 2015

Wisbech Bus Station. Picture: Steve Williams.

Wisbech Bus Station. Picture: Steve Williams.

Archant

Buses feature heavily in the new transport strategy for Wisbech after a report described the town's public transport as "poor".

Extension of the town’s bus service, improvements to bus services for all residents in the north west of the town and improvements to the Horsefair bus station are all included in the strategy’s action plan.

A report found the current 66 town circular bus service only covers the north west of Wisbech and not all residential areas. It also does not connect with the south of the town including the industrial and commercial areas.

The bus service is so poor that people who use it to get to work have to change buses and still face a ‘considerable’ walk, according to the report.

The action plan suggests both Cambridgeshire County Council and Fenland District Council work with community transport providers and bus operator Norfolk Green to encourage the extension of the service by the operator, or linking the current service with a second town service from the bus station.

Cash from developers will help fund these improvements.

For householders in the north west of the town without a car, access to employment and facilities to the south of the town are limited.

Improved public transport would also help accessibility for people in the villages. The report said: “There is poor/very limited public transport accessibility for those in villages near Wisbech.”

The action plan pointed out “any new services need to be based on a good level of demand. Community transport services need to be considered as well as ‘hopper-type’ services funded through new development”.

Service improvements are a short-term aim as are changes to the bus station.

The bus station is reaching capacity and the report points out “access to/from the bus station is hindered by congestion on Freedom Bridge roundabout”.

Improvements to the bus station would aim to increase reliability of services leaving and entering the bus station, and alleviate traffic issues by encouraging drivers to park away from the town centre and use the bus.

A feasibility study would be required in the first instance to investigate various options.

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