Bus18 investment in new West Yorkshire vehicles reaches £23.5m
Bus18 partners First West Yorkshire, Arriva and Transdev have announced that their joint total 2017 investment in new buses for West Yorkshire reached £23.5m.
The bus company’s leaders Paul Matthews, Managing Director for First West Yorkshire, Alex Hornby CEO for Transdev Blazefield and Jonathan Woodhouse, Head of Operations from Arriva Yorkshire, joined forces today (27 November) along with Dave Pearson from West Yorkshire’s Combined Authority to showcase some of their latest additions.
Bus18 was launched back in March by the three bus companies, the Association of Bus Operators in West Yorkshire and the Combined Authority. They are all working together to further improve the customer experience and make travelling by bus a top choice for residents across the county.
The partnership has already seen improvements in information displays which are being rolled out across 14,000 bus stops, a new MCard android app which lets customers buy and upload travel directly on to their smart cards, and the approval of £1m worth funding to work on schemes that will ease congestion at 28 bus hotspots.
They have also launched a ‘no quibble’ free journey guarantee for any customer not happy with their bus journey, and a refund for a taxi journey home if the last bus that night fails to show within 20 minutes of the scheduled time.
The investment made by West Yorkshire’s bus companies in new, low-emission vehicles is testament to their commitment to enhancing the complete customer experience and providing the very best for passengers across the region.
Paul Matthews, Managing Director at First Leeds, said: “As one of the major bus operators in Leeds, we understand the vital role we play in working with our Bus 18 partners to find solutions to help reduce air pollution across West Yorkshire, which is why our investment in new low-emissions vehicles is a step in the right direction.
“Allied to our commitment to invest in 284 new vehicles in Leeds with the latest engine technologies by the end of 2020, we are delighted to announce that the first of these vehicles will be out on the roads before the end of this year. The new vehicles will be fitted with Euro VI engines, which demonstrate our commitment to helping to improve the air quality across the city, as these engines produce over 90 per cent less harmful pollutants than the vehicles they replace.”
Alex Hornby CEO for Transdev Blazefield, added: "Millions is being invested right now by local bus operators in the latest low-emission vehicles to make buses a better choice to travel in and around West Yorkshire, and on routes from outlying towns and cities too. Here at Transdev, we remain committed to invest in buses that people want to be seen on. All our fleet in Leeds has been renewed in the past 2 years, including new Euro VI buses for the 36 which as well as featuring a top-spec customer environment, boast less harmful emissions than a brand-new diesel car."
Jon Croxford, Area Managing Director for Arriva Yorkshire said: “We are delighted to be part of the Bus18 partnership. Playing a vital role in transportation in West Yorkshire, we are committed to making buses easier to use and more environmentally friendly. In 2017 over £7m has already been invested to achieve this with 37 new buses with Euro VI engines, and further investments will be made in 2018.”
Cllr Keith Wakefield, West Yorkshire Combined Authority Transport Chair said: “Air quality in our towns and cities is a key issue for local Councils and the Combined Authority. Bus18 is where the Authorities and commercial bus operators work together to encourage people out of their cars onto cleaner buses. We will harness bus operators’ investment in new buses together with current government funding to improve emissions from older buses to increase the numbers of passengers travelling on a clean bus fleet.”
Last week it was also announced that Bus18 was working towards launching a discounted ‘go anywhere’ day ticket for young people, a key priority for the partnership.
The work carried out under Bus 18 has been described as ‘just the beginning’, the team’s aim is ‘to set the foundations for a brighter future for bus passengers across the county for years to come’.
People can find out more about Bus18 click here.