Transport & Mobility
Exeter ticket zone map

ANALYSIS

Stagecoach escapes major sanctions over service failures

Traffic commissioner decides four days of free weekend travel in Exeter Plus ticket zone is sufficient penalty for poor performance despite public inquiry hearing severe criticism of company.

Devon County Council 2022-24 capital transport programme allocations

ANALYSIS

Motor vehicle infrastructure continues to dominate Devon transport spending

New active travel infrastructure to receive just 5% share of capital allocations this year and next, with new roads capital expenditure to increase from 74% to 86%.

Figures show declining Exeter walking and cycling rates as active travel delivery falls by the wayside

ANALYSIS

Figures show declining Exeter walking and cycling rates as active travel delivery falls by the wayside

County council plans to remove Queen Street active travel infrastructure despite road space reallocation commitments expose equivocal city transport policy aim.

Stagecoach proposes free travel and fast-tracked information upgrades to compensate for service failures

NEWS

Stagecoach proposes free travel and fast-tracked information upgrades to compensate for service failures

West of England traffic commissioner holds Exeter's principal bus operator to account at public inquiry, with final decision on performance expected this week.

GALLERY

Kidical Mass returns to Exeter's streets

Hundreds of people took part in Exeter's third Kidical Mass family bike ride on Saturday as part of a global campaign for safe cycling routes for children, young people and families.

Exeter cycling & walking strategy five years late and counting

COMMENT

Exeter cycling & walking strategy five years late and counting

County council soft-pedalling on infrastructure plan which city council says will not form part of new Exeter Local Plan despite Department for Transport guidance.

Bus back better? Exeter services expected to remain unfit for purpose without needed changes

ANALYSIS

Bus back better? Exeter services expected to remain unfit for purpose without needed changes

Government underfunding and bus sector challenges limit scope for improvement but county council failure to upgrade routes and policy ambitions plus high housing costs make Exeter difficulties acute, undermining net zero aspirations.

Alphington "enhancements" will not mitigate traffic impact from massive South West Exeter extension

ANALYSIS

Alphington "enhancements" will not mitigate traffic impact from massive South West Exeter extension

County council manipulates public consultation and allocates just 1% of £55 million grant to pedestrian scheme while spending 75% on new roads and increased road capacity for 3,500 new cars expected on greenfield housing estate.

£900,000 to keep Magdalen Road one-way system despite decisive public support for low traffic street

ANALYSIS

£900,000 to keep Magdalen Road one-way system despite decisive public support for low traffic street

County council misrepresented and omitted key public consultation findings in report and did not publish results until after decision taken in favour of option with only 18% public support. Exeter Observer snapshot survey finds 90%+ motor vehicles passing shops are through traffic.

GALLERY

Kidical Mass Exeter: "The best day ever"

300 people took part in the first Kidical Mass Exeter family bike ride on Sunday 15 May as part of a global campaign for safe cycling routes for children, young people and families.

More talk less action

NOTES & SKETCHES

More talk less action

The county council has derived more surprising new insights from the second phase of a consultation on the impact of traffic in Heavitree and Whipton...

Buses stop

NOTES & SKETCHES

Buses stop

Exeter’s Labour county councillors successfully lobbied County Hall to convene an unscheduled meeting of the Exeter Highways and Traffic Orders Committee (HaTOC) yesterday to discuss the state of bus services in the city...

Not such an honourable mention

NOTES & SKETCHES

Not such an honourable mention

Cranbrook’s appearance in a recent Transport for New Homes report examining new housing developments across England to find out whether they are built around sustainable transport or car dependency does not exactly celebrate the satellite town’s mobility provision...

If you think electric vehicles are the answer, you're asking the wrong question

COMMENT

If you think electric vehicles are the answer, you're asking the wrong question

Mike Walton of Exeter Cycling Campaign says we shouldn't be seduced by the motoring lobby into believing that electric cars can create the future we and our children need.

Stagecoach strike to take place following failed pay negotiations

NEWS

Stagecoach strike to take place following failed pay negotiations

Transport union RMT says Stagecoach pay offer is unsatisfactory and demands better conditions as staff shortages threaten services.

Bonanza on the buses

NOTES & SKETCHES

Bonanza on the buses

There was no shortage of hyperbole to accompany last Sunday’s opening of Exeter’s glamorous new bus station...

30 year plan for SW transport outlined in consultation document

NEWS

30 year plan for SW transport outlined in consultation document

Strategic vision places investment in roads ahead of decarbonisation despite acknowledging the region's high car dependency rate.

Okehampton to Exeter "Dartmoor Line" passenger rail service reinstatement confirmed

NEWS

Okehampton to Exeter "Dartmoor Line" passenger rail service reinstatement confirmed

£40 million Department for Transport "Restoring your Railway" funding to enable trains every two hours by end of this year, with plans to increase to hourly service during 2022. Stakeholders combine to get South West infrastructure needs onto Whitehall agenda.

Council abandons temporary COVID-19 cycling and walking safety plans in Exeter city centre

NEWS

Council abandons temporary COVID-19 cycling and walking safety plans in Exeter city centre

Devon County Council cites "pushback" from traders as schemes on North Street, South Street, Fore Street and Cowick Street are scrapped. Meanwhile temporary changes in Topsham are dropped after "snap poll".

Devon County Council fails to deliver promised COVID-19 cycling and walking infrastructure

NEWS

Devon County Council fails to deliver promised COVID-19 cycling and walking infrastructure

Deadline for action on social distancing for safe travel set by county cabinet member passes despite Devon receiving £1.7 million share of government emergency fund.

Coronavirus exposes council failure to deliver Exeter transport plans

ANALYSIS

Coronavirus exposes council failure to deliver Exeter transport plans

Devon County Council's failure to deliver overdue Exeter transport strategy and cycling and walking plan has led to an inadequate response to government demands for emergency coronavirus road layout changes.

Coronavirus halts decision to spend £3.9 million on car park repairs and upgrade

NEWS

Coronavirus halts decision to spend £3.9 million on car park repairs and upgrade

Exeter City Council spending plans will be revisited in June at same time as Net Zero Exeter carbon reduction plan is discussed by Executive.

An integrated public transport service for Devon remains a distant aspiration

ANALYSIS

An integrated public transport service for Devon remains a distant aspiration

A change to Exeter's G bus service operator has revealed the limits of Devon County Council's approach to transport system integration.

We already know what to do about the climate crisis. We must get on with doing it as fast as we can.

ANALYSIS

We already know what to do about the climate crisis. We must get on with doing it as fast as we can.

Exeter and Devon council leaders must begin rapid regional decarbonisation now. The quickest, cheapest way to cut emissions in Exeter is to deter combustion engines from entering the city. Clean air legislation offers a basis for action.

Streets are for people, not cars

COMMENT

Streets are for people, not cars

Cars adversely affect economic output, air quality and wellbeing, take up valuable space when parked and discourage people from walking and cycling when driven. Reducing their use would enhance Exeter's retail and leisure offer, improve public health and attract needed workers to the city.

Planning & Place
Exeter empty and second homes by council tax band October 2022 bar chart

NEWS

Exeter has more empty and second homes than built in city in past two years

Council tax premium proposals that aim to raise additional revenue from underused housing stock might also encourage return to residential occupancy.

University of Exeter students based at Streatham & St Luke's campuses 2021-22 & 2022-23 table

NEWS

30,000 students based at Exeter university campuses in 2022-23

Freedom of information request reveals significant drop on last year with postgraduate students accounting for 58% of fall in numbers.

Co-living - discover a new way to rent

COMMENT

Council development levy changes are insufficiently evidenced and don't meet city infrastructure needs

Exeter City Council and Liveable Exeter partners impose faulty typology driven by policy objectives while ignoring new local plan, evidence base and statutory funding statement and excluding residential and retail charges from review.

Arts & Culture

SATURDAY 25 FEBRUARY 2023

Phonic FM 15th birthday party

Exeter's community radio station celebrates fifteen years of broadcasting with an evening of live music and DJs.

EXETER PHOENIX

SATURDAY 28 JANUARY

#Instructions2LiveBy

An interactive Preston Street Union event invites participants to seek out wise words and helpful hints in fact and fiction.

EXETER LIBRARY

MONDAY 23 JANUARY 2023

Until Tomorrow

A new play about three parent carers based on academic research by Dr Siobhan O'Dwyer.

EXETER PHOENIX

Climate & Environment
Exeter city centre retail area map 2017 and 2022 CDRC data

COMMENT

Is the grass really greener in Exeter city centre?

Academic research placing Exeter retail area at top of green space table was nationally reported, locally misrepresented then repurposed as booster fuel by local politicians overlooking study's social justice focus.

England and Wales water company 2021 pollution incidents per 10,000m2 of sewer bar chart

NEWS

South West Water performance remains among worst in sector as it falls further behind targets

Regulator highlights "sustained poor performance" after serious pollution incidents nearly triple and Environment Agency condemns company in annual assessment.

Exeter Climate Action Hub

NEWS

Climate Action Hub opens in Exeter city centre

A dedicated climate crisis information and resource centre is opening on 25 November in an empty Princesshay retail unit to provide events, meeting space, film screenings and drop-in advice and support.

Democracy & Governance
Devon County Council headquarters at County Hall

NEWS

Underperforming county council children's services to receive nearly half of proposed spending increases

Details of simultaneous £50 million 2023-24 spending reductions not yet published as finance director cites service delivery "re-prioritisation".

Exeter Development Fund workshop presentation October 2021

ANALYSIS

Exeter City Futures falsely claims development fund documents disclosed under FOI legislation

Senior council director puts company on collision course with Information Commissioner's Office as significant governance failings emerge after councillors and public kept in dark over Liveable Exeter financing scheme proposals.

Exeter City Council 2020-21 external audit report cover

ANALYSIS

Exeter City Living put council at "significant financial risk" after £2.2 million loss in first two years

Missing business plan, lack of transparency and conflicts of interest among senior council directors prompt board resignations and governance review at council-owned and funded company.

Community & Society

FRIDAY 17 FEBRUARY 2023

The Oil Machine

Free film screening and panel discussion with Dr James Dyke and Professor Tim Lenton.

CLIMATE ACTION HUB

MONDAY 13 FEBRUARY 2023

PRISM Exeter speaker series

LGBTQIA+ people share their experiences working in STEMM as part of this year's LGBT+ History Month.

EXETER LIBRARY

SUNDAY 26 FEBRUARY 2023

Seed Bank seed swap

Inaugural event also features talks on composting, fermentation and reducing kitchen waste with stalls, displays and activities.

MAKETANK

Economy & Enterprise
Exeter City Council government borrowing 2014-2022 bar chart

ANALYSIS

Council borrowing nearly triples in three years as property acquisition and development loans mount

Freedom of information request reveals five paragraph "outline business plan" for £55 million Guildhall shopping centre investment.

Exeter 2020 net internal migration by age group bar chart

ANALYSIS

Exeter beset by unaffordable housing, low graduate retention and economically inactive over 50's

Exeter City Council executive ignores key challenges flagged in major council-commissioned employment and skills research report.

https://unsplash.com/photos/90S8ll64S_o

NOTES & SKETCHES

How to inflate housing costs and influence people

Despite Exeter’s rapidly worsening housing crisis, the council has continued its relentless promotion of the city as a destination to potential incomers by commissioning a coterie of Instagram influencers to flog the place to their followers after spending a May weekend here...

All topics

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