ANDY Burnham will place his strategy for reducing Manchester’s congestion at the heart of his manifesto to become mayor of Greater Manchester.
The Labour MP for Leigh visited the Manchester Museum of Science and Industry yesterday to speak with residents to help form his transport policies.
Burnham said: “If the commuters of London had to put up with Greater Manchester’s transport system there’d be riots.
“All across Greater Manchester our roads are at saturation point and traffic is at a standstill.
“We can’t go on like this, it’s taking longer and longer to get around.
“If I’m elected as mayor, tackling congestion will be a top priority from day one.”
Burnham notes that Manchester’s roads are the third busiest in the UK with journeys taking 78% longer at evening rush hour compared to other times.
Encouraging car sharing by allowing cars carrying several passengers to use bus lanes is a policy proposed by the Leigh MP.
Burnham also wants to improve bus services as their use in Manchester has been in decline as opposed to London, where bus use is increasing.
The former shadow home secretary states in his manifesto that: “The new Mayor will have the ability to introduce new integrated ticketing arrangements – making journeys faster and smoother, improve information about journey times and fares, and plan what bus services are needed – joining up routes with other forms of public transport.”
He added: “With the right Mayor, we can ensure that bus services work for everyone.”
The Labour MP also wants to promote cycling and said: “I want to put cycling at the heart of my plan to get Greater Manchester moving.
“We need to make cycling the obvious and safe choice for short journeys. This will help reduce congestion and pollution, and promote physical activity.”
Burnham is up against Conservative candidate Sean Anstee, Liberal Democrat Jane Brophy, Deyika Nzeribe from the Green Party, Shneur Odze of UKIP and Stephen Morris who represents the English Democrats.