Transport providers, businesses, local authorities and local communities have come together at a first-of-its-kind event held by West Midlands Trains.
The inaugural Transport Integration Forum is a unique opportunity to explore ways to improve connectivity and travel integration issues across the West Midlands Railway and London Northwestern Railway networks.
A variety of topics were covered, including station travel planning, improving 'Access for All', investment in car and cycle parking and incentives for business. There was also a look at how Community Rail can support integrated transport planning in the future and how we can use the planning process at strategic and local levels to place our stations at the heart of the community
Key partners including AcORP, TfWM, PTRC/CILT, Sustainability West Midlands, nextbike and Smartgo were also in attendance, along with WMT team members. A number of ‘market stalls’ were held between the main sessions, to enable delegates to talk more extensively about the issues important to them on a one-to-one basis.
Andy Camp, commercial director at West Midlands Trains said: “The forum is an important first step to improve the transport network for all. The key is to look at how all forms of transport can work together, not in isolation. People are interested in their whole end-to- end journey not fragments of it. We want to work with partners to make the door-to-door journey easier and simpler.”
Paul Webster, operations manager at the Association of Community Rail Partnerships said: "ACoRP were pleased to be part of the WMT Transport Integration Forum. We strongly support an integrated accessible public transport network linked with opportunities for increased use of walking and cycling routes to railway stations. This is a valuable partnership to co-create sustainable transport solutions for all across the WMT network."
Julian Scriven, CEO of nextbike, who are delivering the West Midlands bikeshare scheme said: “I found the event incredibly useful for gaining a deeper understanding of the plans for integration, first mile/final mile initiatives and delivering sustainable travel solutions. The event was perfectly timed as it was just ahead of the Cycle City event in Manchester, where similar themes were discussed with leading national figures in cycle promotion”
Notes to editors
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About West Midlands Trains
West Midlands Trains Ltd. will be running the West Midlands rail franchise from 10 December 2017 until 2025/6. Abellio has a 70.1% share of the company, East Japan Railway Company (JRE) and Mitsui & Co., Ltd. (Mitsui) own the remaining 29.9% in a 50:50 split.
Abellio is the international passenger transport subsidiary of the Dutch national railway company, Nederlandse Spoorwegen. Every day our people provide rail, bus and tram services to 1.7m customers across the UK, Germany and in the Netherlands. In the UK we operate buses through Abellio London, as well as ScotRail and Greater Anglia train services, and Merseyrail in a joint venture with Serco. In Germany we operate Abellio Deutschland, serving communities in North Rhine Westfalia, Saxony, Lower Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt, Hesse and Thuringia. Our role in transport extends beyond the journey from a-to-b. With our international heritage and our policy of sharing best practice, not just amongst ourselves, but across the wider transport industry, we provide thought leadership and truly innovative ideas which make a positive contribution to the communities we serve. For more information on Abellio visit www.abellio.com
Mitsui is one of the most diversified and comprehensive trading, investment and service enterprises in the world with 139 offices in 66 countries as of March, 2017. Utilising our global operating locations, network and information resources, we are multilaterally pursuing business that ranges from product sales, worldwide logistics and financing, through to the development of major international infrastructure and other projects in the following fields: Iron & Steel Products, Mineral & Metal Resources, Infrastructure Projects, Integrated Transportation Systems, Chemicals, Energy, Food Resources, Food Products & Services, Consumer Services, IT & Communication, and Corporate Development Business. Mitsui is actively taking on challenges for global business innovation around the world. For more information, visit www.mitsui.com.
About JR East
East Japan Railway Company (JR East) was established in 1987, when Japanese National Railways was divided as part of a package of railway reforms. JR East’s railway business covers a 7,500 km (approx. 4,660 miles) network in the eastern part of the Japanese main island, including Tokyo Metropolitan area, and provides transportation services, comprising urban, suburban and high speed operations, for 17 million passengers on a daily basis. JR East also undertakes non‐transport commercial activities, which account for more than 30% of the total revenue of JR East Group. JR East contributes to passengers and communities it serves by delivering high degrees of punctuality, reliability and comfort and also continues to pursue higher levels of safety and service quality through technical innovation. For more information, visit www.jreast.co.jp/e.