Cardiff employees say capital let down by bad transport

Picture of Cardiff skyline showing the Millennium Stadium peeking out behind tall buildings Employees of top firms are positive about Cardiff

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Employees of Cardiff's top companies are concerned about commuting and travel in the city, research has found.

Cardiff Business School surveyed 648 workers at companies including Admiral, PwC, Legal and General, Tata and Tesco.

Their biggest concern was transport and infrastructure, particularly congestion, the cost and availability of parking and poor public transport.

Cardiff council said it had developed a variety of schemes to help tackle travel issues.

Employees of the companies said congestion (54%) lack of cleanliness (29%) and crime (25%) were problems in the capital.

But almost all surveyed wanted to keep working in Cardiff, with 68% saying they would like to for the foreseeable future.

The Cardiff Employee Survey was carried out for the Cardiff Business Partnership (CBP), an organisation representing major employers in Cardiff.

Start Quote

It is important that views of those who work in the city are taken seriously. ”

End Quote Professor Rick Delbridge Cardiff Business School

Natalie Grimshare, a communications officer at Admiral, took part in the survey.

She said Cardiff was "a great little city" but that she was concerned about her daily commute when she moves house soon.

"I'm worried about the lack of public transport and the cost. If you want to go from one side of Cardiff to another, there's no easy way to do that. If there was better transport people could get around easier and it would bring communities together."

Roy J Thomas, a CBP director, said that policy makers would need to "consider the findings when shaping a vision for the future".

"The council and assembly government keep telling us what they think Cardiff needs, but we thought it was better to take a bottom-up approach. We asked employees about their experience directly, which nobody ever does."

Prof Rick Delbridge, of Cardiff Business School, said: "It is important that views of those who work in the city are taken seriously. Good companies undertake employee surveys but this was a survey of the city. The survey is the first to look at how people feel about Cardiff as a place to work."

Making improvements

Cardiff council said the issue of traffic congestion and parking had to be tackled, as with all major cities.

A spokesperson said: "In March 2009, the Welsh Assembly Government announced Cardiff as Wales' first sustainable travel city and we have developed a number of schemes to help alleviate travel issues.

"The sustainable travel city project is designed to actively promote sustainable travel within the capital, and has provided a city car club scheme, on-street cycle hire as well as supporting and encouraging employers to consider how their staff travel to work by providing grants to provide facilities for supporting walking, cycling and public transport."

The council said part of improving the options for travellers had involved planning and making improvements to the city's cycling network.

"These measures are backed up with improved infrastructure in the city, better bus priority measures and park and ride facilities to support travellers who can now opt to leave their cars on the outskirts of the city and take advantage of frequent, efficient and dedicated bus services to the city centre," said the spokesperson.

We asked for your views about travel and transport in Cardiff

Traffic congestion is horrendous in the city centre with long delays every day. Public transport is unreliably and slow to the point it quicker for me to walk the 4 miles home that wait and catch a Cardiff bus.

Mike, Cardiff

I wanted to catch a bus from Cardiff city centre to Heath hospital on 22nd March. I sent an email to Cardiff bus because I couldn't understand their timetable...I am still waiting for a reply...luckily though I did not have to go by bus as a friend offered me a lift

Antony Griffiths, Tonypandy

Having recently left a job in Cardiff, the biggest problem I experienced was the fear of crime/harrassment. I hated walking from work to Central station even at 5.30pm because part of my route was full of people begging, fighting or swearing. It seems wrong that I now feel safer walking home from work in west London than I ever did in south Wales.

Anna , London

I catch the 7.49 am train from Pontypool to Cardiff each day, I then catch another train to Heath High level and do the reverse on the way home. 90% of the time it works very well. It is a much better (and greener) way to travel to work than join the morning parking lot on the A48m each morning. I don't need my car for work so I do leave it at home. I also have a fold up bike which I use to get around Cardiff occasionally.

Nigel Gaen, Pontypool

I run a business in Cardiff and find it time consuming and frustrating to travel about the city. Cardiff Council seem hell bent on creating Third World traffic jams in Cardiff in a bizarre belief that by causing traffic jams that will somehow make people use buses - despite the fact that the buses get stuck in the same traffic jams once they leave the city centre bus lanes. What fool decided to make east to west travel through the city centre (Kingsway/Castle St.) one lane only? That causes huge queues - if they wanted a bus lane why not make the road wider by taking a few metres of the castle's grassed area? The Council wasted millions on roadworks by the castle yet have never bothered finishing the A4232 link from the Butetown Tunnels through to Rover Way which would allow east to west traffic to avaoid the central area completely.

Tony, Cardiff

I work in Cardiff center. The commute in is a nightmare, parking is far to expensive and unless you live in Cardiff on one of the central routes public transport is not an option. To reach work via public transport requires four changeovers and a commute time approaching two hours each way. Unfortunately when the council says they are addressing congestion they mean they will be raising parking costs and reducing speed limits on all roads. Public transport is not an option, do not cripple the only viable means of transport for people outside of your urban bubble and commuting. Cycling? 20 miles? every morning and evening on these roads, are you insane!

David, Llantrisant

I cycle to work 4 days a week purely because it is quicker than driving, the 1 day a week I do use the car I am constantly surprised with what appears to be Cardiff's obsession with traffic lights most of which don't appear to work as efficiently as they could and why do the council keep changing the few junctions that do seem to work well?

Simon, Cardiff

I travel from Penarth to Llanishen every day. One bus + two trains. It's about 15 miles but it takes me an hour and a half - in each direction - that's a very long day.And that's when everything runs to time. Except a lot of the time they don't. The bus timetable doesn't join up with the trains [2 buses an hour - come on guys!] meaning long waits.Trains are always being cancelled or not running because of vandalism or theft. My line [Coryton] is only a half hourly service despite Ty Glas where I get off being a very busy station. It's un -manned so it's scary & there are no train display monitors so you've no idea when or if a train is coming. Cardiff needs better public transport links throughout the city & the surrounding areas. If something isn't done no one will want to work here.

Jill, Penarth

I am not surprised, I popped into Cardiff today to drop my watch off for a service and parked in the Westgate Street NCP, I was there 25 minutes and it cost me £5.90 !

Anthony Ashmead, Newport,

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