A Conversation for The Nottingham Express Transit, Nottinghamshire, UK
A local view
RockitRon Started conversation Dec 11, 2006
A great, concise summary of Nottingham's new tram system. Their website, accessed from the "Referenced Sites" is extremely good, if anyone wants deeper and technical info, and includes a driver's view journey of the line, at high speed!
You mentioned the trams' livery and cleanliness. The colour scheme is not actually the most eye-catching, particularly in the winter gloom. However, the distinctive deep-toned bell (like those on the steam trains in movies of the Old Wild West) that rings out all over town, makes most people aware of their presence.
The cleanliness results from liberal use of, I think, Jeyes Fluid; the smell is quite powerful, particularly in the morning!
The tram has proved to be highly successful, much to many locals' surprise, and the service frequency has had to be improved to the point where it's running at full capacity and, short of ordering more trams, can do no more. The success can be attributed to the fact that it fully integrates with other public transport, and that ample park & ride provision for private motorists was made at the outlying stations, to encourage them to leave their cars outside the city centre.
The existing line services traffic coming off Junc 26 of the M1 Motorway; the two planned new routes go in the direction of the other motorway exits for Nottingham, and the expansion appears to be logical. However, since the benefit to most Nottingham residents is marginal, there is a strong campaign against the proposals.
It also has to be said that, although the present line does make an operating profit, neither it nor the extensions are ever likely to recover the capital cost of the scheme.
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