Monday, October 4, 2010

Nottingham railway station revamp

Here's a story I really don't get.

The revamp of Nottingham Station includes "a new 950-space multi-storey car park and highway improvements in Queen's Road", and "extra shops". Let me put it another way. This is a 'railway' project that actually encourages people to drive! £60M is a lot of money. By contrast, over the last 5 years, Nottingham City Council has spent £5M on cycling. 

If this development were a purely private endeavour, it would be one thing.

So where is the money coming from? "£41m from station owners Network Rail ... £2.1m from the East Midlands Development Authority, £1.6m from East Midlands Trains and £500,000 from the Rail Heritage Trust". East Midlands Development Authority is a taxpayer-funded quango. Network Rail is Government-owned, and East Midlands Trains receives a Government subsidy. So this is in large part, directly or indirectly, government cash. Another £14.8m is coming from from Nottingham City Council through the workplace parking levy. So Nottingham City Council are spending the money from the workplace parking levy on building a car park. I've just checked my dictionary, and that is actually the definition of irony.

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