The report’s findings follow detailed analysis work and stakeholder engagement.
Work has already started on the set of final recommendations based on the emerging conclusions, and these will be put forward to Welsh Ministers by the end of the year.
Lord Burns, Chair of the South East Wales Transport Commission, said:
We have found that congestion on the M4 is largely a peak-hours problem, predominantly associated with commuting. People have few credible public transport alternatives for the types of journeys they need to make.
COVID-19 has of course dramatically reduced traffic, although levels are slowly increasing towards the pre-COVID-19 level. We do not believe that COVID-19 fundamentally changes the problem of congestion and our primary focus remains to suggest ways to tackle it. However, a new priority is to consider the impacts of COVID-19, in particular the potential for greater remote working.
Overall, our view is that the region needs an integrated network of alternative transport options that do not depend on the motorway. Our focus is now on deciding the transport services that should form part of this transport network, in particular new rail stations, reliable bus services and new cycling routes.