Today the Prime Minister Boris Johnson committed to a Major transport overhaul, with an investment of £5 million over 5 years, the money will be pumped into the UK Bus industry , as well as a super cycle highway, similar to the Dutch model. The range of measures include a revamp of local services across the UK. Simpler fares, new green buses, improved routes and simpler and easier fare options. The boost is planned to improve both Bus and cycle routes for every region outside of London. The intention of the funding package is to result in higher frequency bus services, especially during evenings and weekends.There are also plans to introduce” turn up and go” bus services currently operating in London , by TFL. The concept is that passengers don’t need to rely on a timetable, as they can be confident that the bus will arrive within a short period of time.
It is also set to introduce at least 4,000 brand new Zero Emissions Buses, set to meet the UK’s climate target. In addition the funding will instigate more affordable, simpler fares. To compliment the bus investment, cycle networks will see a promise of over 250 miles of new high quality cycle routes. The UK Bus industry has been declining steadily over the last few decades, as a combination of cuts in rural funding for bus networks has seen the obliteration of country bus routes across the UK, an early casualty of the austerity measures, introduced since the recession of 2008. In addition, the increasing effects of City centre congestion has resulted in significant reductions of Bus journey times across the UK. In addition the complete lack of a UK National Bus strategy has also resulted in a lack of pro Bus initiatives with only a few enlightened individual Local Authorities creating a small package of positive partnerships that has overturned the decline in Bus usage. Overall however virtually every region in the UK has seen decline in both Bus passengers and miles operated each year.
The opportunity now for the first time in decades is finally a reality, to allow the bus industry to step up to the challenge to deliver a professional and working bus network that will not only enable modal shift from car to bus. But, equally vital help stimulate economic and social reform in both urban centres and rural communities where the role of the bus has a massive role to play in elevating the quality of life for those living outside of town and city conurbations. It has to be said that this day marks a massive change in the fortune of the UK Bus industry, and visionary cloud based Companies like uTrack have a vital part to play in elevating the Industry to meet the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.