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Roads Service failing to see way ahead... again

Published 02/10/2012

With an apparent total lack of ability to foresee the obvious, DRD Roads Service has done it again (News, September 27).

In advance of implementing its new traffic scheme in Belfast, where was the programme educating the public about the plan?

It seems to have been implemented by the same mentality that establishes cycle lanes only part of the way along a road, or the wrong way down a one-way street. Encouraging people to make more use of public transport and reduce traffic in the city is laudable. But the first thing that should have been done was to fully integrate public transport services, so that we have properly connecting trains and buses.

As a regular commuter by public transport, I can safely say that the system works reasonably well.

But I often question the wisdom of having two bus companies and a railway company owned by the same public corporation, yet operated as competing services. We should follow the good examples of other countries, which have had much greater success.

In Canada, for example, the government of Ontario operates the GO Transit integrated public transport system as a public service and not primarily for profit. I think it could be a good model for examination.

Only when the public transport system is fit for purpose is it the right time to force people to change their thinking and use it.

If it can't serve their needs, then why should they?

MARTYN BOYD

Bangor, Co Down

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