Wednesday evening met with Peter Hendy, Commissioner of Transport for London. My three asks were: extending the 603 bus route to run all day and evening (as always); the transport issues around the new London Health Trust plans including the polyclinics (we need to ensure there are good public transport links for any such); and whether he would think about encouraging car clubs (where people share cars) via a congestion charge incentive.
So – number 1 – the 603 bus from Muswell Hill to Swiss Cottage. Well – the possibly good news is that it comes up for review next year. So our job is to make sure we feed into that review with thousands of requests to extend the operating hours from its current school run times only. People keep asking me about this – so we will have to ramp up our campaign again.
On number 2 – well it was interesting – because there are huge transport implications in the proposals to restructure health services. Firstly – the need to access in emergency for stroke, heart attack and major trauma the proposed super-specialist hospitals. Surely travel time trials from every part of London need to be done to establish the worst scenario time taken when traffic is bad and no air ambulance available? If we can’t get the victims to the right place in time – then this plan won’t work.
Secondly, the establishment of polyclinics – which are to serve up to 50,000 residents – may raise big transport issues. Will people be able to get to the polyclinics in reasonable time and at reasonable cost?
Peter was saying that this could be an issue and was going to arrange to meet with the Government to talk over the transport implications. Hurrah!
On number 3 – yes – Peter is considering how best to encourage the expansion of car clubs – so he agreed to look at the congestion charge in that regard – but I think any discount will be along the lines of discounts to people within the zone but not outside. Anyway – it is in and on his mind.
Update: you can read my article subsequent article about polyclinics here.