Friday, 1 July 2011

The Trams

Trams are an ongoing issue in this city, with the good news now that the council have to find £200 million in order to pay for the trams, given that it's £215 million over estimated budget, and delivers considerably less capabilities than, say, buses. I won't say I'm always exactly right on my estimates for shopping, but if I nip to the local shop to buy dinner, I reckon I'll spend about a fiver. It's very rare that I'll come in and put my dinner on the conveyor and then get told "That'll be £200,000,005 please. Do you have a clubcard?". So you can see people's frustration at this level of incompetence. The trams are about as undesireable as a shaved chimp wearing lingerie would be in bed, but impossibly cost £770 million. I don't think I've ever seen a council spend close to a billion pounds and be more disliked for it. "We're fixing all of the roads, which look like they were made in 1842 and haven't ever been repaired since!" would have been a better option. Or "Increased funding towards primary schools to help our youngest citizens develop into the flowers we know they can be". Or "Increased funding to police to cut down on crime in your area: Edinburgh Council, keeping YOU safe.". Hell, they could even have just given us back the money, which, at 2001 census levels, would put £1716 back in your pockets (Or £1215, if the project had remained perfectly on budget). It takes a spectacular level of incompetence to analyse the options, and then go "No, this money goes to transport, despite our well-funded and efficient bus service. Which we will not dedicate this money to improving, expanding the network or delivering an improved service. No, what we will do is devise a sort of... a sort of bus train, that can only go places on rails, so it's trapped on one route. Perfect. Lunch break, anyone?". Spectacular.

Other things that money could have been reasonably spent on, provided that it was reasonably well invested and so on: A free ridacard for every citizen, every year, with interest/returns from the remainder hopefully being enough to cover the next year's costs, which would encourage usage of public transport much more than, say, a trapped bus living on rails and yearning to be free. A free pony for every household to cut down on car use for small journeys. Hay expenditure not covered. Just some of the ideas of the top of my head, that are better than trams.

No comments:

Post a Comment