Transport User Voice – September 2022 – Winding down in the West Midlands
25 August 2022
A successful time during the games
August saw the delivery of a fantastic Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. Both sport and transport made all the right headlines.
Transport Focus has been part of the preparations for this event for the past 15 months through the Commonwealth Games Steering Group, Grand Railway Collaboration and West Midlands Bus Alliance. Despite strikes affecting the first Saturday everything went ahead extremely well. Around 400 Transport Champions supported people getting to all fifteen venues with over 1.3 million tickets sold for the games, all including free public transport. Bus, metro, rail and shuttle-bus arrangements combined successfully to get people from A to B from 28 July to the 8 August.
We visited a number of transport hubs throughout the games and the experience was positive across the board. Birmingham New Street broke its passenger record on two consecutive days on the last Friday and Saturday of the games, with close to half a million visitors across the 48 hours.
Critical to the success of the games was the co-ordination role of the Regional Transport Co-ordination Centre, an outstanding facility we visited in 2019 when it first opened. With 13,000 additional cycle hires and a fleet of electric vehicles out of Birmingham, it was very much an active travel and environmentally friendly games.
We will be working hard with the Grand Railway Collaboration to learn lessons and keep best practice alive and well. We’ll also help support a real transport legacy from a public transport perspective for years to come. The new £30 million Perry Barr station is a great example of this along with the enhancements to local infrastructure including University station and the new metro extension to Edgbaston Village.
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