A CITY-WIDE Glasgow Metro should be built to create a new comprehensive public transport system, according to a panel of experts.

The idea is the centrepiece of a new report into Glasgow’s transport for the future by the Connectivity Commission which was set up by council leader, Susan Aitken, to investigate improving transport and reducing congestion and enable people to get from communities to where public services and jobs are.

The plan would see the proposed new rail link connecting Glasgow Airport to Paisley Gilmour Street station able to be extended along the south bank of the River Clyde connecting the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Braehead to the city centre.

Other routes would include trams to the east end and west end, running along the centre of main thoroughfares like Great Western Road and Edinburgh Road.

READ MORE: Plans to link Glasgow Central and Queen Street stations with city centre tunnel

A Subway Eastern Circle is also proposed by the Commission and converting the Cathcart Circle rail line to a metro with faster, more frequent trains into Glasgow Central

The phase 2 report is published today and looks at the wider connectivity of the city.

Phase one, earlier in the year, was focussed on Glasgow city Centre and making the streets more accessible for people prioritising pedestrians over cars.

In the latest report, a series of ambitious and costly infrastructure projects are put forward as the solution to a better 21st century public transport system.

The Commission report, which was chaired by Professor David Begg, a former transport advisor to the UK Government, argues massive change is needed.

It states: “The first priority of such a wider strategy to transform the fixed public network should be the creation of a comprehensive Glasgow Metro for the city.

“The Glasgow Metro would be a network of high capacity rapid transit lines serving as much of the city as possible so that the fixed transport system plays the fullest possible role in ensuring inclusive growth across the city’s communities, sustaining the international competitiveness of the key employment concentrations in and around the city centre.”

For the Metro to serve the south of the city connecting communities and facilities, the Airport rail link is the first crucial step.

And its recommendation could send it back to the drawing board yet again.

READ MORE: Map of Glasgow Metro shows plan would connect communities right across the city

To achieve the Glasgow Metro the commission says the latest proposal of a rapid transit shuttle or people pods between the airport terminal and Paisley is not workable.

The Commission states: “Notwithstanding our comments on technological choices for the wider Glasgow Metro network above, we are clear that the link between the heavy rail interchange at Paisley and the Airport should be of a kind that is capable of being extended to the city centre along the South Clyde Growth Corridor as a full Glasgow Metro line.

“This quite clearly means that autonomous pods are not an appropriate solution for the Airport connection.

“Furthermore, we understand the term ‘People Mover’ to mean an automatic shuttle type train of the kind used at Gatwick Airport for the inter-terminal link.

“Whilst this would provide a good connection between Paisley and the Airport, it would be difficult to extend this kind of system over any significant distance towards the city.”

The Commission looked at improvements that could connect communities better and provide a public transport alternative to road in communities poorly served, like in the south west of the city and the north and north east.

It said that different elements of the City Metro would take the form of different systems and the Commission has looked to other European cities for examples.

Prof. Begg said: “It is now time to consider strategic changes which not merely add to our already congested network but reshape its purpose in order to support future growth for the decades ahead, including connecting to new HS2 services.”

The plans would be costly and take a long time to deliver.

However, Prof Begg, said: “We do not underestimate the challenges required to implement this report’s ambitious proposals. But we also believe they are affordable, deliverable and necessary if Scotland wants to achieve its goal of fostering sustainable and inclusive economic growth.

“We urge all agencies concerned with the future of this great city to work together to achieve these aims.”

Read more of today's top Glasgow stories.