Green perspectives on Stockwood and Bristol. Mostly.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

Jeckyll and Jon

In his Dr Jeckyll persona, Jon Rogers excelled himself at this morning's Joint Transport Execs meeting, confronting the forces of darkness from BaNES, South Glos and N. Somerset. His anger wasn't enough to persuade them to relax their opposition to an Integrated Transport Authority for Greater Bristol, though.

What he did manage was to make them admit it openly. The cross-party consensus in the city that an ITA is the only way to achieve a half-decent public transport system evidently doesn't extend into the neighbouring Tory unitaries. North Somerset's Elfan Ap Rees -whose favoured transport is by helicopter - was particularly obtuse and nimbyish. He'd said at the previous meeting that he'd like to kill the ITA ambition stone dead. In the end, it may not be quite dead, but it's certainly stuck in a coma with no real hope of improvement.

That was the extent of Jon's challenge to the status quo. When it came to the South Bristol Link, I'd put my own statement drawing members attention to the absence of analysis, consultation, and future proofing in the one remaining option, and asking them to make sure that that there was still a choice other than saying 'yes' to it. No chance. The statement didn't get a mention, even to refute it, as the officers' programme to build a ring road was nodded through. Whatever Jon meant when he said here that "do minimum is always an option" remains a mystery.

(picture of Elfan ap Rees leaving the meeting, job done.


bristolwestpaul said...

Can't understand the objection from the Tories to the ITA, unless they are big fans of First Group.

thebristolblogger said...

I don't think this is a party political issue.

I think the other councils look at Bristol and see a basketcase council (whoever's in power) that will just waste their money on self-aggrandising projects, huge salaries and ideological nonsense.

They know full well they'll be a one way flow of money from them to transport projects on the greenbelt, daft roads to nowhere, technically backward rapid transport projects etc and nothing in it for them

If I represented BANES, North Somerset or South Gloucs I wouldn't touch Bristol City Council with a barge pole either.