Issued by City of York Council
Bus users in York will notice some big improvements to their daily commute in August and September, when the city’s bus network gets a makeover.
Routes across the city will be transformed through a package of improvements funded through part of the £3.5 million Better Bus Area Fund, awarded to City of York Council from the Department of Transport in 2012.
Real time information screens will begin to be installed at busy stops in York’s city centre, and at other locations, such as stops at York Hospital and at York St John University.
The screens will show the arrival times of buses as they approach the stops, based on real time information, which tracks the bus as it travels across the city.
Alongside the new screens, the council will install new timetables for every stop which will be clearer and easier for people to read, and equipped with QR codes and near field communications so that users can access real time information at a touch of a button through their phones or tablets.
Noticeable improvements are also being made to stops outside the city centre – and include upgrades to bus stops and shelters across the city.
All the timetable cases and bus stop flags have recently been replaced on routes 1, 4, 44 and 6, with similar works on route 5 beginning soon.
In addition to this, the roadway at some bus stops has been resurfaced, yellow lines repainted on the road and some pavements have been repaired where they were in a worn condition.
York is also set to get its first ever Bus Warden in August, who will be able to assist passengers with enquiries on-street.
The warden will work alongside with the council’s Parking Services, and North Yorkshire Police to clear vehicles blocking bus stops and bus routes, assist at any incidents and work with street services to keep bus stops in the city centre clean, tidy and in good repair.
The cost of the Warden is funded entirely by the Department for Transport through the BBAF.
Cllr Dave Merrett, Cabinet Member for Transport, Planning and Sustainability, said: “Through this government funding we hope to increase bus usage in York by 18 per cent in 2015/16.
“The improved bus interchange points and measures to tackle journey hold-ups in the city centre will help to bring York’s local bus services into the 21st century, and give residents a better quality alternative to the car for many local trips.”
The citywide improvements complement the introduction of the Bus Enquiry Desk at York Station almost a year ago. The popular information desk provides advice to over 1,000 visitors and residents a week.
Also secured through the government’s BBAF, the council has employed new Network Monitoring Officers who are based in the authority’s new state-of-the-art York Travel & Control Centre (YTCC) – which officially opened its doors in June.
The team will be in charge of monitoring bus services and working with bus operators to improve their reliability, and the information available for passengers. The cost of this service is funded entirely by the Department for Transport through BBAF.
Other improvements around the city in the coming months will include replacing bus stops and shelters at the railway station, Piccadilly and Rougier Street.
For more information about the improvements to York’s bus network please visit the i-Travel York website.
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