After a journey of 4,000,000,000 miles the New Horizon space probe has rendezvoused with Ultima Thule. It has travelled at an average 35,100 miles an hour for 13 years to an object 21 miles by 9 miles in size.
On the same day my daughter came home to Bishopston having spent new years eve at a friend’s house in Avonmouth. She used the bus “service”. A journey of 4.25 miles as the crow flies took two hours. An average speed of just over 2 miles and hour. She could have walked it quicker.
Why can we send a probe so efficiently to the far reaches of the solar system but can’t provide an efficient way to get around a major city?
Now I know what you’re thinking – “It’s easy to mock but what would you do about it?”
Well, this is the statement I made to the meeting of Bristol City Council on 11th December 2018:
The problem with our Transport System is that those in charge never consider anything invented after 1900. As my proposal for the Portishead Railway line shows newer can be better and cheaper.
In Bristol itself our elected Mayors look consistently to the past. The first one wanted to build trams. In Edinburgh eight and a half miles of tram cost £1004 m. Even Captain Red-pants himself admitted that wasn’t affordable.
Mayor Rees looks even further into history with a proposal from the 1860s – an underground railway. £5 billion would provide just 4 routes across the City. That amount of money, £5,000 million, would be enough to build 490 miles of Skytran. I’ll spell that in case you wish to look it up: S,K,Y,T,R,A,N. Other systems are available.
Imagine it! 490 miles would cover every major and minor route in Bristol with on-demand transport 24/7 at up to 60 mph!
Councillors. Stop looking backwards and saying what a great engineer Brunel was. Turn around and face the future. It’s coming whether you like it or not!