Wolverhampton to Walsall Mass Transit Feasibility Study
SYSTRA was commissioned by Transport for the West Midlands (TfWM) to establish the feasibility of extending the Midland Metro network further into the Black County to serve New Cross Hospital, Willenhall and Walsall. Through this study a number of preliminary options were considered to serve the major attractors along the route in terms of potential revenue performance and net operating revenue.
SYSTRA considered street running LRT and Tram Train options including routing patterns, service frequency and stopping patterns with and without the proposed heavy rail route between Walsall and Wolverhampton for which demand was also produced.
The study produced an outline annual revenue assessment of each option based on service demand using the TfWM Public Transport model and scheme operating costs generated by a SYSTRA Operating cost model which has been calibrated to the outturn costs of the current Midlands Metro system. This analysis identified a series of indicators including Patronage levels, operating costs and predicted annual revenue surplus, which were used to identify the most viable scheme for the corridor.
Following this initial stage of the study, SYSTRA prepared a more detailed appraisal of the preferred schemes Economic benefits including consideration of measures to generate increased patronage along the corridor were also considered including;
- Encouraging greater patronage levels through the implementation of physical links to the scheme and the inclusion of smarter choices initiatives.
- Provision of an integrated bus, tram and rail network to maximise patronage and also minimise the impact on non LRT Public Transport routes and therefore revenues.
- Smart ticketing initiatives to encourage the use of the LRT services.
- Enhancements to public realm in association with the proposed routes.
- Wider economic benefits – enhancements to the wider productivity of the area through improved accessibility between the workforce and jobs.
- Land value uplift – identification of development sites where either the development is unlikely to occur without the scheme or the levels of development will be intensified as a result of the scheme.
- Reducing Operating and Capital costs – through changes to the routes, stopping patterns, service frequency and consideration of alternative technologies.