The workshop brought together a group of practitioners and policy makers to discuss the feasibility of using a new generation of trams to connect the historic centre with new housing and other developments. Short (ten minute) presentations were followed by questions, to scope out what a feasibility study would examine. A report is now available under downloads>
Despite the positive experience of using modern trams to boost the quality of life, accessibility and prosperity of many European cities, little work has been done on their application to historic cities such as Oxford or York that have congested centres and pressures for new housing. In August 2014 URBED won the prestigious 2014 Wolfson Economics Prize for their proposals for Uxcester Garden City. Their study showed how new local infrastructure such as a tram could be funded from the uplift in land values by developing new housing on the edge of Oxford.
The Oxford Futures workshop in November in Oxford brought out the need for radical solutions to cope with a rapidly expanding city, and the example of Oxford’s twin city Grenoble in France to illustrate the potential, and the need for new housing and transport infrastructure to be considered together. At the same time research at UCL, for the Sintropher project on tram trains, is examining how other European cities make projects viable that in the UK are considered unfeasible through different appraisal and funding systems.
This event was held in collaboration with University College London on Thursday 12th March 2015