Two new Vantage services available from April
Manchester-bound bus passengers on the A580 are set to benefit from more services during the morning rush hour.
From 9th April, two new Vantage services will provide an extra 130 seats, enabling more passengers to use the increasingly popular route to access retail, leisure and employment opportunities in the city centre.
The new services, which will run at 6.55am from Tyldesley and at 8.19am from the A580 park and ride site, will both terminate at Princess Street.
Operated by First Manchester, the service launched in April 2016 and reported over 1m passenger journeys within its first six months. Its popularity has led to some services becoming full by the time they reach the A580.
To free up capacity, four of the other morning Vantage services will now also terminate at Princess Street rather than continue to Oxford Road. These are the 6.22am, 6.37am and 6.52am services from Atherton and the 7.10am from Leigh bus station.
Passengers on these services can continue their journey to Oxford Road by alighting at Princess Street and catch a following service.
Services will run on the normal timetable for the rest of the day.
Greater Manchester Mayor, Andy Burnham said: “Having experienced the Guided Busway and Vantage service first hand, it comes as no surprise to see so many people using it.
“I am delighted that more peak time capacity has been added to help even more people access employment, leisure and retail opportunities in the city centre.”
Cllr Mark Aldred, Chair of the Transport for Greater Manchester Bus Network Committee, said: “We’ve listened to customer feedback and I’m delighted that we’ve been able to work with First Manchester and provide this much needed extra capacity for passengers on the A580.
“It’s fantastic to see just how many people are now using the service and the need to provide extra services is testament to its success.
“The busway has proven to be of real value to the communities it serves and I’m delighted to see our investment benefitting so many people.”
Phil Medlicott, Managing Director at First Manchester, said: “Vantage continues to surpass all forecasts, with 2.5million carried in the last calendar year and we’re due to have reached 5 million by April. With the guided busway, and the rest of the bus priority measures in place, we’re able to run a fleet of environmentally friendly buses quicker and more reliably than before making Vantage an ideal alternative to the car.”
Councillor Roger Jones, lead member for transport at Salford City Council, said: “I'm delighted the Vantage Bus Scheme is so useful for people. We have listened to their feedback and now providing extra buses on the route to create extra capacity during peak hours.”