Train operator East Coast has launched a scheme to encourage rail passengers to car share when travelling to Darlington station to catch their trains.
A number of bays in the station’s car park have been allocated for use only by vehicles with two or more occupants in an initiative to reduce the number of car journeys undertaken by rail passengers.
The scheme has been launched in partnership with Darlington Council and forms part of the local authority’s travel plan that aims to encourage rail passengers to use public transport, cycling and walking to get to and from the station, to benefit the environment and reduce traffic congestion.
Darlington Duty Station Station Manager Lee Spence said: “As an environmentally-aware train operator , we want to help people make transport decisions that not only benefit them financially, but are sustainable and low carbon.
“Taking the train instead of a domestic flight or driving has a significant carbon saving and sharing the journey to the station is a good start as it reduces the number of vehicles on the road.”
Councillor David Lyonette, Darlington Council’s Cabinet Member for Transport, said: “The new parking for car sharers has been installed to help rail travellers become more sustainable in how they get to the station.
“This is just one outcome from the Travel Plan that has been developed for the station through a partnership between Darlington Council and East Coast Trains.
“Other improvements planned include improved visitor information displays in the ticket office, improved signage around the station and with secure cycle parking.
“We hope these improvements will encourage more train travellers to become more environmentally-friendly by either sharing a car to the station or cycling there.”
Less carbon is emitted by taking the train rather than car from Darlington to London King’s Cross. Passengers can save 23 Kg CO2 compared with making the journey by car. The saving is equivalent boiling 430 kettles, 541 hours of TV or 34 hours to power a house.