Couldn't agree more. My own experiences of public transport around Manchester have been quiet pitiful. I really would be better on a push bike but I'm too much of a fat, asthmatic ba$tard to be bothered
Everything else you've said above - spot on...
Unlike most large towns and cities.. Mine was designed and built around the car. There simply isn't an infrastructure in place to support mass public transport.
Some cities have proved that reintroducing trams can cut pollution and traffic congestion in and around town centers. The problem with a privatised public transport system... if it's not profitable, it's not worth it. So the people living on the outskirts of a town, of a newly developed part of a city.. Have practically zero access to public transport.
There is one bus that comes through my estate... It goes from the north west, down to the town center and then out to the north east. If I want to go to the south of the town center, I have to take more than 1 bus. The previous job I had was actually midway between the north east/west points of the city... Could I get a direct bus there.. no, I had to get a bus into the town center and another out again. A bus that takes a 7 mile route to do 3 miles.
Because we have lots of seperated estates, each one practically isolated from the rest of the city... Each one with it's own little pub, shop, chippy... we have main dual carriageways throughout the city... Do the buses use these, and the specially built laybys with bus stops in them... only when they have no choice to get from one estate to the next.
I mapped the route of one buss travelling from North to South of the city... 13 miles it drove, and the timetable shows it takes 50 minutes to do it. That same route, going via the main roads that go between each and every estate in the city, past the train station, and through the main town center... Was 7.3 miles and would take around 30 mins.
I'll stick to my car... and keep saving so I can leave this country.