Bath Quays development Park and Ride bus London Road Bath

73,000 people travel into Bath by car daily

Bath is a vibrant, successful and growing city, a regional hub for jobs and a magnet for tourists and visitors. But success brings challenges; Bath’s streets weren’t designed for cars so we have to work hard to keep traffic moving in and around the city. Every day over 73,000 people travel into Bath by car – according to predicted growth figures, by 2029 the figure will be 96,000*.

The decision

The new site for the east of Bath Park and Ride has been chosen after over a decade of debate, exhaustive analysis and consultation.

Site B to the west of Mill Lane has been chosen as the preferred option by the Cabinet of Bath & North East Somerset Council. The site in Bathampton is adjacent to the A4 and close to the A46 and A363.

If negotiations over the sale of the land and access cannot be resolved, site F will then be progressed.The new site (either B or F) is estimated to cater for 800 cars with a Park and Ride bus service available every 12 minutes taking passengers into the heart of the city.

Planning for future growth

96,000 people will travel into Bath daily by car in 2029

The Council is committed to creating new jobs and homes in Bath. These are set out in the Core Strategy and Joint Spatial Plan, which make plans for around 7,000 new homes and 11,000 new jobs by 2035.

Alongside this, the number of visitors to the city is also predicted to grow 3% a year, from the 2014 figure of 5.8 million. This could bring in an additional 174,000 visitors each year [Bath Hotels Futures Report 2015].

The new Park and Ride sites are part of a package of measures along with improvements for cyclists, rail improvements and lobbying for an A36/A46 link road. Bath will see a significant growth over the coming years with thousands of new homes and jobs being created. To ensure we can support this growth, we have to plan now for how people will get into the city in the future and a Park and Ride to the east of the city is fundamental to managing the increased volume of traffic expected as the city grows.

We need an efficient transport system that offers commuters and visitors attractive alternatives to using their cars to drive into the city. Given the constrained nature of the road network within the city, public transport improvements, including Park and Ride, will be a key part of a package of transport measures.

Over 8 million vehicles travel the London Road every year

Why has the site been chosen to the east of Bath?

There is a long-established need for a new Park & Ride site to the east of Bath – this is the busiest, most congested approach to the city and it is the one that doesn’t currently have a Park & Ride option.

Roads are at capacity and, with the expected increase in traffic planned development and growth will bring, congestion will become significantly worse without an east of Bath Park & Ride. The bus services running from the Park & Ride will bring people into the city without adding to existing congestion.

Use the interactive map below to see further details of the options considered by the Cabinet . Click on each map location for site descriptions and images.

 

Both Site B and Site F are suitable for the Park and Ride site.

  • Neither site is on the floodplain and both are outside the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).
  • Of the two sites, Site B is the preferred option chosen by the Cabinet because those people living closest to it have the least view of it, although the plans include fully screening the site with mature trees.
  • Site B also has the greatest opportunity to include a rail link at some time in the future.

However, whilst site B is our preferred location, its use is subject to the purchase of the land and securing agreement from Highways England over access from the bypass. As site F would also offer a suitable alternative, if these outstanding matters cannot be agreed the Cabinet has agreed to revert to site F which is within the Council’s ownership.

Current P&R services

Over 2 million people use the Park and Ride each year

The Park and Ride sites we already have work well and benefit the whole of the Bath and North East Somerset community.

With two million passengers every year Bath’s three Park and Ride sites already remove hundreds of thousands of cars from the city, but these sites are not easily accessible to people coming in from the east of the city. A new Park and Ride to the east will allow more people to get in and out of Bath without driving into the city.

The number of individuals using the Park and Ride sites in Bath has grown consistently year on year with 1,788,205 passengers in 2008/09 growing to 2,069,751 passengers in 2015/16. Even with a new east of Bath P&R, the other three sites will continue to grow as demand for access into the city centre increases in line with growth.

A new Park and Ride is just one part of a series of measures the Council is taking to help keep Bath moving. We are working hard to help mitigate congestion – this includes greater provision for cycling and walking, MetroWest, improving traffic flow and exploring an A36/A46 link road [Getting around Bath Transport strategy].

What will the site look like?

The Cabinet has taken on board the concerns of local residents. Both sites B and F will be extensively screened and landscaped to ensure there is minimal visible impact. This will be coupled with improved signage to encourage greater use of the Lansdown Park & Ride site by those arriving from the north. The latest technology will be used to deliver Bath’s greenest Park & Ride ever.

Enterprise Zone to increase economy by £1.2bn by 2030

Next steps

Members of the public will have the opportunity to continue to put forward their views as part of the formal planning process.

View details of the Cabinet papers.

Supporting papers:

 

* Traffic count in accordance with Department for Transport guidelines. Figures includes people who have destinations within Bath and excludes those travelling through Bath.