Glasgow Airport Monorail link could really take off
Glasgow Airport Monorail link could really take off :Channel Tunnel engineer Jim Beckett, 78, says his proposal to link the terminal to towns and tourist destinations in the west of Scotland is better than a mooted tram-train scheme.
A retired engineer has revealed an alternative vision for improved transport links to Glasgow Airport .
Jim Beckett, 78, says a monorail is the ideal solution for shuttling passengers to and from the terminal.
He slammed the idea of train-tram project, which was discussed this week at summit between the transport minister and council chiefs.
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Jim, who helped designed the Channel Tunnel, says his Â£300million seven-mile proposal is better value than the mooted solution, as itâs less than half the price.
He told the Paisley Daily Express: âThe route chosen for the monorail includes major centres of population and retail and leisure venues on the west Clyde corridor and would be a powerful economic driver for this area.
âIn its first two kilometres, after leaving Glasgow Airport, the route gives the passengers a taste of Scottish scenery, with views of the Old Kilpatrick hills, and, from Renfrew to Glasgow, gives views of a revitalised Clyde waterfront.
âThe intent of the tram-train is to take passengers from the airport direct to Glasgow Central Station, with one stop at Paisley Gilmour Street.
âThose wishing to travel directly to the city can, at present, take an express bus.
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âThis trip takes 15 minutes and is a perfectly acceptable mode of travel for arriving and departing passengers.
âHowever, during peak rush hours â barring an accident on the M8 â this journey can take up to 40 minutes.
âThe tram-train is being proposed to solve a problem which only exists for a maximum of six hours per day.
âWe are going to spend at least Â£144million of public money on a solution which adds nothing to the transport infrastructure of the west of Scotland.â
Jimâs electric monorail would also have stops in Renfrew and Braehead .
It would also call at Glasgowâs Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, the Riverside Museum, SECC, Linthouse, Govan, Kelvinhaugh, Finnieston and Plantation.
He has calculated projected passenger numbers for his project, based on that route, in a comparison with the Edinburgh tram system.
Jim says it is âreasonable to assume passenger numbers would be similarâ at around five million each year â an average of 67 per train each day.
He added: âThe tram-train route would introduce investors, business people and tourists to Scotland through an area of post-industrial dereliction between Shields Road and Glasgow Central.
âThis is not the image of Scotland we want to promote.â
Jim, of Brookfield, says his raised-platform monorail means the route could cross over busy roads and motorways.
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He has highlighted a stretch of the proposed tram-train line which would have to traverse the M8 and A726 before joining the network.
Jim continued: âThe proposed line of the tram-track from the terminal to the Network Rail main line is just over one kilometre.
âWith a projected cost of Â£144m in total, this would make this piece of track one of the most expensive constructed in the UK.â
Renfrewshire Council leader Mark Macmillan met with transport minister Humza Yousaf to review the proposals.
He explained: âWe have held talks to accelerate the project.â
The infrastructure project is the cornerstone of the Clyde Valley City Deal and was approved two years ago, with work due to start in 2020.
The partnership of eight councils and the Scottish and UK governments have pledged more than Â£1billion for capital schemes across the region.
It has earmarked Â£144m for the link, with a further Â£78m to connect Renfrew to Yoker by bridge.
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