Transport for West Midlands, part of the West Midlands Combined Authority, is responsible for making transport ‘happen’. We are accountable for delivering against a statutory transport plan Movement for Growth, which sets out our ambition to create a happier, healthier and better connected region through improving transport.
We’re striving to deliver a world-class integrated transport system which is clean, safe and affordable. One which puts people at the heart of decisions and gives everyone in the West Midlands access to the very best education, training and employment opportunities, no matter where they live in the region.
£5bn is committed up to 2026 to almost 200 schemes, set out in our 10 year delivery plan, which will help realise our vision and meet the needs of a rapidly growing population, while enabling economic growth. We are also supporting investment in our transport system from our partners including Network Rail, Highways England, High Speed 2 and the Department for Transport.
Working in partnership with 7 local authorities we serve a population of 2.8m. We’re responsible for 8m daily journeys, concessionary schemes and providing essential bus services. Our smartcard, Swift, is the largest smartcard scheme outside London.
We own, operate and reinvest profits in the Midland Metro, which carries over 7m passengers every year. When our current expansion plans are complete that figure will rise to 30m. By 2026 our tram network will have tripled and proudly serve two HS2 stations as well as offering improved access to Birmingham Airport; reinforcing our pivotal role in the heart of the UK.
Local rail services are co-managed by us under the West Midlands Railway franchise and we’ve got plans to open two new rail stations in the Black Country by 2021.
We’re also building Bus Rapid Transit, a reliable and frequent bus service characterised by dedicated bus lanes, locally we call it Sprint. We’re developing new Park & Ride sites and working with bus operators under an award winning Alliance to deliver a Vision for Bus which will transform bus services in the region.
Devolved powers for local roads means we are also responsible for monitoring and improving road safety, bus lane contravention, permit schemes and air quality on 23 key roads in the West Midlands, called the Key Route Network.
Maintaining the KRN is essential for keeping our region moving and connected to the national strategic road network
Rapid changes in technology means we are developing services which are fit for the future. We were the first region to receive Mobility Zone funding, enabling us to deliver the first Connected and Autonomous test bed in the U.K and roll out 5G technologies which will help us model and manage our networks more efficiently.
This is alongside getting ready for Coventry City of Culture in 2021 and the Commonwealth Games in 2022.
Naturally this level of investment brings challenges and requires coordination to keep the network running as normal. We’ve secured over £19m of funding to create a Regional Transport Co-ordination Centre (RTCC) which will give us, and our partners, a complete and single view of the whole transport network, including roads, for the very first time.
Anticipated to be in place by the end of 2019, the RTCC will bring together all West Midlands transport delivery partners and operators to monitor the transport network 24/7, managing incidents on the network collectively and providing citizens with real-time journey information to help them to make informed decisions about their journeys; keeping the region moving during major roadworks and events.