The Train and Metro
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The rail system of Birmingham is well established. Less well established is the Metro system, which has only been in operation for a short while.
"Rail transport is a very convenient form of public transport. It gives direct access to Birmingham City Centre, including the heart of the bus network, and is not affected by bus congestion. It gives your employees a chance to work or relax as you travel"
From 'Company Travel Wise'
The Birmingham Metro is not unlike that of Manchester, which is shown in the photo on the right. Nor is it an uncommon idea. Worldwide, there are numerous light rail and rapid transit systems in operation, and the map below shows a selection of these. Some are more famous than others, for example the London Underground. Rapid trains are not uncommon around the world. In Japan, they are the Shinkansen (Bullet) and in France, the TGV (Train a Grande Vitesse).In the UK, research shows that for more than 50% of people, the nearest railway station is a 25 minute walk away. The trains and Metros of today are efficient, and generally reliable.
Manchester City Centre
However, they are underused, and in need of an improved image. They have associations with the old trains, and need a boost in image so that they can compete with the modern car.
New Street Station, Birmingham
New Street Station Concourse
Train tickets can be booked over the Internet (see The TrainLine ), and operators are rapidly reducing the cost of medium distance travel.The use of Park and Ride in Birmingham has increased over recent years. The train is rapidly becoming a faster way to travel, especially over distances above 100 miles. Despite the reduction in air travel costs, rail is still the cheapest way to travel to locations such as to London from Birmingham.

The use of Park and Ride in Birmingham has increased over recent years. The train is rapidly becoming a faster way to travel, especially over distances above 100 miles. Despite the reduction in air travel costs, rail is still the cheapest way to travel to locations such as to London from Birmingham.

The Metro will introduce a new style of transport to the West Midlands. The clean and quick transport which runs between Birmingham and Wolverhampton will reduce the traffic on the M54. It will also provide a cheaper way to get to Birmingham for those living in the North of the area. The Bullet train in Japan is never late. It runs exactly on schedule throughout the year. We in Birmingham should be able to match this.

DID YOU KNOW?
A return ticket to Birmingham International serving the airport and the NEC from New Street Station costs just 3.95. The same 18 mile round trip from the City Centre by car costs 6.31, using a mileage rate of 35.1 pence per mile. This does not include parking costs.
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Transport problems The Car The Train and the Metro
The Bus as Public Transport Walking and Cycling Links and Bibliography
This site was prepared as an entry for the Travel Wise competition 2000
and went online on 31/3/2000.

Copyright 2000