£1.3m boost for local bus services
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The award from the Department for Transport’s ‘Better Bus Area’ scheme will be used to improve services on eight routes including the A38 from Bristol to Thornbury and the A420 from Bristol to Kingswood Town Centre.
The award is being made to the South Gloucestershire, Bristol and Bath & North East Somerset councils and the funding will support measures that improve journey times and make bus travel more attractive, such as new and extended bus lanes and upgrades to bus stops.
Measures along the A38 corridor will include improvements to bus stops between Aztec West and Thornbury with provision of raised boarding facilities, new shelters and real-time information displays at some locations.
Chair of the council’s Planning, Transportation and Strategic Environment Committee Cllr Brian Allinson said: “This is another welcome boost in our drive to improve bus services for South Gloucestershire and the wider West of England.
“Our vision for transport is to encourage a shift away from the private car to more sustainable travel options such as public transport, cycling and walking in order to reduce congestion, support economic growth and promote a better quality of life for everyone.
“Bus services are key to this vision and small measures like enhanced bus lanes and better traffic management can make a big difference to journey times and the attractiveness of bus travel. I hope that with this funding we will see more people in South Gloucestershire and the West of England choosing to travel by bus.”
The Better Bus Area improvements will complement a range of measures being taken forward by South Gloucestershire and neighbouring local authorities to enhance bus services in the region as part of an integrated West of England transport strategy.
These include the £79m Greater Bristol Bus Network of 10 ‘showcase’ bus routes, which was completed in 2012, and the MetroBus network of three express ‘bus rapid transit’ routes from Ashton Vale to Temple Meads, the North Fringe to Hengrove and the South Bristol link between the Long Ashton bypass and Hengrove Park.
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