The membership of a panel of independent commissioners who will recommend how to build a sustainable and integrated transport system for North Wales has been announced by Deputy Minister for Climate Change Lee Waters (pictured).
In February, the Deputy Minister announced plans to establish the North Wales Transport Commission led by Lord Terry Burns.
During a visit to an innovative transport initiative in Denbighshire he announced the membership of the group and the areas it will focus on. The Deputy Minister had the opportunity to see the electric powered Fflecsi bus first hand, which will provide a service in the Ruthin area. Funded by the Welsh Government, it is Denbighshire’s first ever zero emissions, 100 per cent battery operated 16-seat minibus.
In common with similar schemes in other parts of Wales, Fflecsi is a demand-responsive service, with passengers able to book their journey an hour beforehand. It will introduce a bus service for many people in Ruthin for the first time.
The Deputy Minister said: “I’m pleased to be in Denbighshire to announce the commissioners who will form the North Wales Transport Commission, and what they will focus on. The new Ruthin Fflecsi bus service is an excellent example of what can be done to improve transport links in rural areas in a sustainable way. For many people, this is the first time they will have access to a bus service they can use from where they live, and provide a real alternative to using a car for journeys in the area.
“The North Wales Transport Commission will build on the great work already being delivered by the North Wales Metro programme such as this Fflecsi service, and consider the needs of all communities; both urban and rural, along the coast and inland.
“It will be based on the successful model of the South East Wales Transport Commission, where after a year of hard work we’re starting to see our plans for an integrated public transport network become a reality.
“This is the opportunity to ensure that North Wales has the transport network which meets its needs for the future, and deals with the challenges we face with the climate emergency.
“I’m very pleased to announce the six commissioners who will take forward this work and provide recommendations to me next year. They bring a wealth of experience and knowledge and I look forward to working with them.”
Minister for North Wales Lesley Griffiths said: “This is good news for North Wales. I’m pleased Lord Burns is chairing this commission, following his expert work in South East Wales. This has the potential to bring effective and innovative recommendations on how to build a sustainable transport network for the whole of the region.”
The six commissioners are:
Professor John Parkin
Professor of Transport Engineering at the University of the West of England and Deputy Director of the Centre for Transport and Society.
Commercial Director of the North Wales Mersey Dee Business Council.
Deputy Chair of the Welsh Revenue Authority and former Leader of Gwynedd Council
Dr Georgina Santos
Senior Lecture at Cardiff University and economist interested in environmental and transport economics and public policy.
Former Director of Planning and Transport at Nottingham City Council, now independent transport consultant specialising in integrating planning and transport.
Stephen Joseph OBE
Advisor and former Director of the Campaign for Better Transport.
The Commission will be supported by a Welsh Government and Transport for Wales Secretariat. From this, the Deputy Minister has appointed Advisory Members to the Commission given their particular expertise. They are;
Active Travel Lead – North Wales, Transport for Wales
North Wales Metro Strategic Development Project Manager
The Commission will be taking an evidence-led approach to produce recommendations that will help deliver a high-quality integrated transport system for North Wales, improving the way we travel while cutting emissions. The conclusions of the Welsh Government’s Roads Review will form part of that evidence base for the Commission’s recommendations, which are due to be presented next year.
Terms of Reference
The Commission will consider the problems, opportunities, challenges and objectives for realising a sustainable integrated transport system in North Wales. The Commission will take a multi-modal approach, looking at all of North Wales to consider how modal shift can be achieved in both urban and rural areas.
The Commissioners will utilise the collaborative approach taken to the South East Wales Transport Commission by:
* Analysing frequent journeys taking place within and through the region by road, including where they begin and end, at different times of the day and within different seasons, including freight;
* Analysing how public transport and active travel are used within and through the region, and where those journeys begin and end. This may include journey that start and end outside of North Wales;
* Considering where the absence of public transport, car ownership or safe active travel corridors creates significant issues in communities;
* Examining the current programme of interventions to support people in North Wales to achieve a mode-shift, including the North Wales Metro programme and other relevant activity already taking place in the region to support active travel and embedding sustainable public transport networks.
Based upon this analysis and feedback from stakeholders, the Commission will then examine proposals for achieving mode shift across North of Wales.
The Commission’s recommendations will be co-developed with stakeholders and consider local and national policies including Llwybr Newydd: The Wales Transport Strategy and the Union Connectivity Review.
* Will be open to the views of the public and all stakeholders including the National Infrastructure Commission for Wales, the Future Generations Commissioner, business groups, social partners, environmental groups, transport users’ groups, local and national political representatives.
* Will consider the needs of current and future generations, taking into account immediate problems and future trends, such as the impact of alternative fuels and connected and autonomous vehicles.
* Will take into account the report of the Commission on Climate Change and other social, economic, cultural and environmental issues, including air quality.
* May consider the behavioural issues that need to be addressed in order to build a multi-modal approach to transport in North Wales, and how solutions might respond to those factors.
* May advise on innovative interventions and funding solutions. It may consider any issues, including governance, costs, financing, planning approach and programme / project management and may recommend improvements to statutory processes.
* Will operate independently of the Welsh Government. It will be served by a Secretariat who will support both the running of the Commission and delivering its work.