Carrot, not stick is minister's way ahead on traffic

ENCOURAGEMENT, rather than legislation, is how Guernsey should get islanders walking and cycling more, Environment minister Roger Domaille has said.

ENCOURAGEMENT, rather than legislation, is how Guernsey should get islanders walking and cycling more, Environment minister Roger Domaille has said.

The department is drawing up a new transport strategy.

Questionnaires have been sent to homes to get islanders’ views and politicians are consulting with groups such as taxi drivers and the bus company.

Deputy Domaille, pictured, said the result of the consultation was not yet confirmed, but he hoped that there would be a greater focus on exercise.

Comments for: "Carrot, not stick is minister's way ahead on traffic "

realist

I`m sorry but it will have to be the stick.

Ectopudding

Rain or Wind = Driving

Backchat

Lagan tractors pulling trailers with far too much weight in = driving then may stand some chance better than none when they can't stop in the wet with their off-road tyres!

Rolf

If the traffic problem had such a simple solution as the Environment Minister suggests, then why was'nt it sorted out years ago?

This needs some lateral thinking, and I wait to see if the Department has the capability to grasp the nettle.

We all realise that much of the problem lies in the fact that the infrastructure of Guernsey hasn't altered despite the fact that Town accommodates the majority of the finance industry and shopping facilities.

Improve the Park & Ride system between Bridge and Town, smaller shuttle buses, a second storey at North Beach, a multi car park at the old Brewery, better use of out of town commercial sites..and get some solid private enterprise involved.

None of these will do any more damage than has already been done.

Martino

That's a solution of sorts. A solution for making the traffic problems in and around town 10 times worse.

Ray

Rolf

"Improve" the Bridge to Town Park & Ride?... I didn't even know there WAS one

A Park & Ride system requires a large empty area where you can leave your car to hop on the handy shuttle .. is there a large empty area at the Bridge ? ( or anywhere North of the Avenue to Cobo line for that matter)

Your second storey and your multi at South Esplanade would defeat the object of a Park & Ride anyway

Town has two main traffic problems ..

1) The sheer volume of morning commuters from every direction (except East!)This always seems to be so much less of a problem when the schools are off

2) The shoppers who , at busy times like Christmas,continually circle the Town looking for a suitable empty space ( and by suitable I mean within thirty yards of their destination)

Your second storey on North Beach could help solve the circulating shopper problem if kept to a 2 / 3 hour limit with punitive (£200+ fines?) for the regular clock changers

As for the thousands of morning commuters ... sod 'em!

While they're sitting in their cars fuming at the line of vehicles ahead of them they should remember that they are part of the problem and that the line of fuming drivers behind them are thinking the same thing

I do wonder sometimes why local transport firms / delivery vans etc bother to join the morning commute.On the few occasions that I find myself in the Bulwer to Red Lion 8.30am crawl I can always count fifteen or so commercial vehicles ahead of me in the line.( I don't bother counting those behind me as I know just what they're thinking)

Rolf

Precisely Ray..the sheer volume of commuters entering a bottleneck.

At least this has got some feedback, whether positive or negative.(Apologies..for'improve' read 'create')

Not my idea, but a suggestion was that a firm such as NCP might finance the second storey at North Beach; and use the ground floor for permit holders, families and the disabled.

I don't consider all suggestions be put in place,but I do know of large areas of derelict greenhouse sites which would be ideal for P & R...

rosie

Rolf: The point of building additional car parking spaces would be to fill those spaces..... obviously. That would increase the volumes of traffic already entering St Peter Port (or anywhere else you put a large car park). We should be trying to ease congestion, not add to it.

Trying to accommodate a constant increase in car journeys is futile and ignores the wider issues resulting from excessive car-dependency. This constant call for additional car-parking is illogical and out of date.

rosie

Rolf: Why wasn't this sorted out years ago? TED's attitude in his answer below gives you the answer and up to now, Deputies have had neither the foresight or cojones to deal with this earlier. The longer it is left, the more hideous the problem and the more entrenched the negative attitude to change. Increasing traffic was identified as a problem decades ago and yet the majority of policies over that time have been to facilitate and accommodate driving which has done nothing but exacerbate the problem.

Rolf

Rosie: Your theory is based on the fact that vehicle numbers would increase ad infinitum. Since Guernsey is a limited entity,population and vehicles can only increase to a definitive level, and present numbers suggest that we may not be far short of that. Even so, any increase will not be overnight.

Your statement that the volume of traffic entering St. Peter Port would increase is unsubstantiated; again due to natural limits. You might not like it but in the 21st century, car dependancy is a fact of life, and a by-product of our wealthy society. This problem needs to be addressed with a positive attitude together with a degree of foresight; the point of additional car parking space is to provide for that inevitable but limited expansion.

rosie

Rolf: It was thought in the mid 90’s that traffic in Guernsey had reached saturation point. Then we had 40,000 cars registered. A mere 20 years later and we now have more than double that at almost 87,000. Granted that number also includes some cars that are no longer on the roads but even bearing that in mind, it is still an unbelievable and unsustainable increase. Our population (sadly) still seems to be increasing year on year and while that continues, we can expect traffic volumes to keep pace unless we do something about it.

Car dependency is not a ‘fact of life’- it is a choice and it does not ‘have’ to be a by-product of a wealthy society- the Netherlands are also a wealthy society and in the 1970’s made a conscience decision to develop a transport strategy that encouraged everyone to use a variety of transport options so reversing their car dependent culture. No reason why we can’t do the same.

There are many reasons why it would be stupid for us to continue down this blind alley- the recent report from N.I.C.E. being a pretty powerful one on its own. I totally agree that the car will always be a part of our transport structure but it needs to be managed in such a manner that the alternative transport options of walking, cycling and public transport are given far more weight and for that to happen we need to reduce the numbers of cars on the road. Additional car-parking will not do that and therefore shows a lack of foresight.


IWV

Car numbers doubled in 20 years!

That suggests to me that they are VERY popular amongst the majority of the voting population.I wouldn't want to be the Minister who decides to wield a big stick

I had to go to the Gouffre gift shop this morning at 8.30.Drove around the coast from the Vale,admired the new Vazon Cafe,taken aback by the airport works,got to the Gouffre at 9 am. Absolutely no traffic problems whatsoever on the way.Cyclists and walkers would have had a virtually clear road and if that is what counts as something to moan about Lord help us all

The only annoyance on my great adventure to foreign parts was that the Gouffre shop doesn't open till 10.30am!

rosie

IWV. No one doubts how popular cars are in Guernsey. TED has already made your point. Sadly, most people look at this purely from their own selfish point of view and are not prepared to look at the wider picture.

What's with the name change?

IWV

Hi Rosie

Re your reply to radical at Post 14

I think that most people don't cycle because most people of driving age have a car

If they have a 10K,20K, 30K even, car in the drive on which they are paying compulsory insurance on top of the monthly HP charges only a small percentage of them will leave it unused and take the cycle out of the shed

I believe that it will take a draconian big stick to alter that situation

Name change? Since Matt Fallaize, who unfortunately is in charge of the investigation into Island Wide Voting, has absolutely no interest in the subject I thought I would sign in as IWV from now on to remind people that at the 2012 hustings it was treated as a very serious matter

I would like to see other regular contributors sign in as IWV2,IWV3 etc even if only for a short time to get the message across that there will be a price to pay if Island Wide Voting is not introduced at the next election

Ray / IWV

Martino

If IWV stands for Island Without Vehicles you can put my name down Ray!

IWV2

Ray (IWV) I'll join your little campaign for what it's worth.

I'm happy to admit I was against IWV until the last election but the fiasco in the Vale where it was statistically more difficult not to be elected changed my mind.

Cheers, PLP (aka IWV2)

Rosie

IWV. That is certainly a contributing factor but those people who ‘would’ choose to cycle, don’t because they are intimidated by the volume of (and behaviour of some) cars. Also, many of those cars that clutter up everyones driveways that you describe are bought because people feel that driving is the only option in Guernsey. At a time of increasing financial pressures, having to invest considerable capital in a collection of cars for every member of the family is not going to help people cope with the increasing cost of living. And that’s before you start to consider the rising expense of running a car

TED

People who think drivers will give up their cars and use public transport or walk are living in cloud cuckoo land. Any politician who brings in anything to drastically anti car becomes un electable at the next election and they all know this. Why would you want to encourage cycling they are one of the biggest causes of traffic congestion on our roads. Another bonkers idea.

Martino

I have done plenty of cycling and driving on this rock over the years.

While driving I cannot recall a single instance of a cyclist or cyclists causing congestion. Sure, I have had to slow down behind a cyclist or cyclists on many occasions but that's not congestion. They have never made me grind to a halt.

However, while cycling I have lost count of the number of times (almost every time I go out on my bike) when my progress has been halted by car/bus/lorry congestion.

You're the one living in cuckoo land Ted

rosie

Martino. Well put. I also think that when drivers are momentarily stuck behind a cyclist, they forget that they are still progressing towards their destination, albeit at a slightly slower pace. Not being able to go quite as fast as they would like feels frustrating and so the automatic conclusion is that hours are being added to the journey time. In reality, it is more like seconds, at worst a few minutes. Not really the big deal it is so often made out to be.

PLP

Agree Rosie. Sounds like Ted could do with a few months commuting on the M25 to learn what traffic congestion really is. Of course if 50% of car drivers started cycling perhaps this terrible "congestion" would decrease.

Talking of traffic density, I've been driving for about 20 years on this island and every time the schools are on holiday I notice a significant decrease in town traffic particularly in the mornings. Sometimes it's so marked I feel like I'm driving on a Sunday.

Backchat

Rosie I take it that you and Martino both ride a tandem together in and out of town then, he must be sat at the front steering the thing as you seem to agree with everything he says!

rosie

Backchat: We do seem to see eye to eye on most things cycling, but sadly not on everything. I have frequently been on the sharp end of Martino's posts on subject where we disagree. It's nicer to be able to sing from the same song sheet!

Martino

@ Backchat. You should read Rosie and I on Sunday Trading, where we are diametrically opposed, but on the question of our chronic overuse of our cars and the ridiculous perceptions of many motorists with regard to cycling and cyclists she speaks refreshing good sense. We do not, however, not ride a tandem together.

Backchat

I do however agree with you guys that creating more car parking in town would be a crazy idea and only make things far worse than they already are

PLP

Rosie / Martino - is there room on this mythological tandem for me?

rosie

PLP. In the trailer.... plenty of room I'm sure!

http://bikeportland.org/2012/06/28/with-six-kids-and-no-car-this-mom-does-it-all-by-bike-73731

ChrisJ

Yeah, bloody cyclists causing all the congestion. They should just get off their bikes and use cars instead.

James

Ha ha.

Anyone stuck behind a cyclist should remember that it's a temporary slow-down until you overtake and speed along the empty road ahead of the cyclist to the next traffic bottleneck. Very different from being stuck in a long queue of cars, from which there is no escape.

Perhaps some car drivers could start moaning about how cyclists (and pedestrians who cross the road at those pesky zebra crossings, for that matter) pay no road tax next?

Gsyman

States have previously resolved to introduce paid parking but to actually implement it is political suicide, although it is already in place at the airport.

soph

When Airport work finished hopes road repairs will not be at tax payers expense!!! (More bus diversions)

Most Lagan drivers ok driving through St Martins

Worst are 4*4 drivers with no idea how to drive in a correct manner. Feel unsafe cycling let alone walking

Backchat

Soph

I agree with what you say about some 4x4 drivers, when I'm driving my little Ford KA I look behind in my mirror and most are driving so close its crazy,

in contrast when I'm driving my 4x4 I notice them following much further behind. I have noted this over several years now, the other thing is they are very expensive models BMW's and Range Rover's, unlike mine which is rather less expensive and not anywhere as big as these monsters

kevin

Yet another way in which our government wants to try and run our lives - is there still such a thing as freedom of choice?

I. Le Page

Too many people in a small island = too many cars on the road.

concerned

What the hell has this got to do with Lagan? Some people will do anything for a whinge at the airport works.

soph

A lot concerned! Your reply was pathetic!!!

Obviously a fan of a tin can that gets you from A to B regardless. So lose the can opener and start thinking about walking cycling or the bus

concerned

You must be a bit simple. The airport works are temporary (and essential to the island). Once they are finished (in a couple of years I think) Lagan will be gone. They have nothing whatsoever to do with the islands future transport policy.

Guern abroad

Some of the Airport works are essential, not all of the bloated project being undertaken.

Mark

What it really needs is for people to realise that a one minute walk from the carpark to the office does not constitute sufficient exercise to keep their body healthy. Or indeed, a reasonable weight.

Once people realise the benefits of cycling and/or walking more often (I know people who drive what is a 2-3 minute walk to get their Sunday paper - how lazy is that!) then we'll all get healthier and live longer. Hmm, then our pension pot will be even more bankrupt than it was before.

No, forget what I said, keep driving all you lot, and eating those lovely pies as well as smoking and drinking excessively...

Guern abroad

The problem wont be increased pension draw but the drain on the health service from all those pies from such a young age. We are weaning our children from one processed food onto yet nore processed food and pies.

Sadly the demand for biiger cars would appear to have risen in tandem with the ever expanding waitlines of the population.

Bed

New transport strategy? I can't wait, we desperately need it. More bikes, shuttle buses and paid parking. Car clubs and car sharing too. Bring it on!

James

Here's a challenge for Roger Domaille:

If encouragement is such a wonderful idea, and so likely to work (given that it hasn't over the past thirty years here, nor in any other urban area I can think of), how about he offers to resign if at the end of one year congestion is not lower, and walking and cycling rates are not higher?

And maybe he'd like to take up a bet with me - I'll wager him £100 against his £50 that encouragement will achieve nothing without some form of "stick".

I guess what he's really saying is that it's all very complicated and tiresome, and he doesn't fancy annoying anyone by introducing an unpopular though effective anti-car policy, so he's decided to do nothing except waste a bit of cash on pointless information campaigns or painting a few white lines on pavements and labeling these 'cycle lanes', like the pathetic example on the Esplanade.

Guern abroad

The day we become accountable for our health will be the day we will see more cycling and walking. Right now you can be as unhealthy as you like and the state will still bail you out of sickness be it with pills or ops. When we kerb accepting a no responsibility status for personal health will be the day the demand on the car will reduce.

soph

Oohs a good point for drivers. Will not risk healthy walking or cycling!!! Live in Guernsey countryside where cars rule the world

So who is accountable, me or vehicles who rush past with no regard?

Radical

Think people are making a mountain out of a mole hill. Let teh congestion continue as it is. If people want to continue to drive, then let them. If not they can decide upon other means. The only thing I think that does need to change is the bus service, which should become more commuter focused. More frequent, shorter journies from the main hubs to town at key times. That would incentivise some but

rosie

'if not they can decide upon other means'.... except of course they can't. Most people won't cycle because the sheer number of cars on the roads intimidates them and walking too feels less safe when large cars whizz by with their wing mirrors almost clipping your shoulders. Totally agree tho' that the bus service needs improvement with much more frequent buses.

backchat

Not the car mirrors that bother me, more like the bus driving on the pavement towards me, then one comes the other way and forces the cars to mount the pavement too, Is it only me that has noticed since the large green bus has arrived it is not a pleasant experience to walk anymore!

A.J.

For those who like to cycle every day,you could always try living in Sark. No cars, no carparks.For most, who live here, especially pensioners,they have to use a car.

milly

One day i walked to work along the front,i spent so much time dodging cyclists i decided to become one.one day i rode to town and spent so much time dodging cars i decided to drive to work.one day i drove to work and spent so much time dodging pedestrians and bike riders i gave up. MERRY XMAS TO ALL YOU BLOGGERS.

Top Decker

I'm with you Milly. Bring back the tram!