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Sunday, September 15, 2019

£8.5 million transport investment for Nottingham buses and trams

Passengers will soon see 250 new real-time bus information screens at bus stops, so they know how close different buses are, while large touch-screens will go up at key interchanges like QMC and Nottingham University offering interactive journey planning.

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Contactless card payments at tram stops and green-light priorities for buses on the A52 will be installed as part of a major £8 million transport investment.

Passengers will soon see 250 new real-time bus information screens at bus stops, so they know how close different buses are, while large touch-screens will go up at key interchanges like QMC and Nottingham University offering interactive journey planning.

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On the A52, ‘smart traffic controls’ will mean buses get green light priority at key junctions, speeding up journeys.

There will also be pedestrian and cycling upgrades throughout the area, including at Clifton and the Boots Campus.

The traffic-free route along the 8.1km Beeston to Nottingham canal will receive a £138,000 make-over, with widenings of the towpath at narrow points, and lighting under dark bridges.

A total of £8.345 million is being spent on the project across Nottingham and Derby, and it is part of the first phase of the Government’s £1.7 billion Transforming Cities Fund.

The initial projects being funded by the scheme are described as ‘quick wins’, meaning schemes which can be turned around relatively quickly.

No fixed date has been set for when the upgrades are in place, but it is ecpected most will be finished by April next year.

The second tranche of funding will look at the longer-term transport projects.

The successful bid for the £8m project was made jointly between Nottingham and Derby City Councils, and it is hoped the new schemes will make travel between, and within the two cities easier.

The Government says the idea of the fund is to improve intra-city connectivity: “Making it quicker and easier for people to get around – and access jobs in – some of England’s biggest cities.

“The aim of the Fund is to invest in new local transport infrastructure to boost productivity by improving public and sustainable transport connectivity” a spokesman added.

David Thornhill, of the Nottinghamshire Campaign for Better Transport said: “All this is good news, and it underlines the excellence of Nottingham in delivering good value for money with government funding.

“The government only gives money to cities if it knows it will be wisely spent, and Nottingham always fares very highly on this, hence why we have another pot of money to improve the quality of life in Nottingham.”

The city council says the 250 real-time information screens will be installed across Nottingham and Derby, and they will provide better disruption information and marketing of bus services and ticketing products.

The large touch-screen displays at key interchange points – such as the Queens Medical Centre and University of Nottingham – will offer journey planning information alongside social media feeds and other content.

And tram users will be able to top up Robin Hood cards with their contactless bank cards at tram stops once a new contactless payment scheme has been introduced as part of the project .

Councillor Jon Collins is the outgoing leader of Nottingham City Council until he is replaced on Monday, May 20 by Councillor David Mellen.

He said: “The Transforming Cities Fund is all about making it easier for people to get around, opening up new job opportunities and supporting our aim to keep Nottingham moving.

“With this funding we’ll be able to make improvements for walkers, cyclists, public transport users and motorists too.

“We’re working closely with Derby City Council to provide a seamless integrated transport network that’s efficient, easy to use and supports local business growth and our regional economy.”

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