Councillors say no to Chester Park & Ride hubs

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On 15 April 2014 it was reported that Chester's cross-party Park and Ride Members Working Group has rejected the suggestion that Park and Ride sites should be become hubs for rural bus services.

Members of the group have written to Councillor Herbert Manley, Executive Member for Growth and Innovation, recommending that the suggestion should be dropped from Chester's Transport Strategy.

Their move follows recent concerns about the potential use of the City's Park and Ride sites to provide hubs for interchange between some rural services and the Park and Ride services.

The proposal was included in the recently published Chester Transport Strategy for consideration, but only as part of the longer term development of this fifteen year strategy.

It was considered by the recently established all-party working group of Councillors who are examining ways to improve the city's Park and Ride network when the contract for its operation is re-tendered in 2016.

Councillor Pamela Hall, Chairman of the Working Group, said: "We noted that there was little support for this proposal during the recent transport strategy consultation. Indeed, breaking journeys, general inconvenience and practical administrative issues relating to the use of concessionary fares were all identified as potential issues as to why this option could not be supported under the current public transport arrangements".

"I would like to take the opportunity to reassure all residents that there are no current changes to bus provision using any of the Park and Rides around Chester. If at any stage in the future the current service provision changes then a full consultation process would be held.

"After examining the evidence, the working group agreed that this is something that is currently not going to be workable in our plans to improve the city's park and ride network or for our support for good quality rural bus services."

Councillor Bob Rudd, also a member of the Group, added: "This issue has been the focus of a number of recent speculative press articles which give the impression that this is a worked up plan and its introduction is imminent."

"The remit of the Park and Ride Member Working Group has provided us with an ideal opportunity to give this proposal closer examination at an early stage and remove any unnecessary speculation."

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