Metrobus – talks still in progress to find operator

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Talks are still in progress to find bus operators to run the new MetroBuses which are scheduled to be launched in Bristol by autumn next year.

MetroBus is a rapid public transport system designed to quickly transport large numbers of people around the area by using segregated busways and bus lanes. The scheme is a joint venture between Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire councils.

A spokesperson for Metrobus told the Knowledge: “Contrary to some reports, the West of England councils are currently in discussions with the bus operators that are interested in running MetroBus services.

“Because these talks are commercially sensitive there’s not much we can say before it is agreed which operators will operate MetroBus services. We expect a decision on services and operators will be made within the next two months, after which we will make an announcement.”

The three South Bristol routes will run from Long Ashton to the city centre, Cribbs Causeway to Hengrove Park and Hengrove Park to the city centre.

Work took place in Knowle West from November 2015 to May 2016 in Novers Lane, Inns Court Avenue and Creswicke Road – which will be part of the Cribbs Causeway to Hengrove Park route. It included creating three new MetroBus stops, resurfacing and installing traffic calming measures.

In the new year work is scheduled to start to widen Parson Street and Hartcliffe Way and improve the junction. This will involve the installation of new pedestrian crossings.

Once the scheme is up and running there will be a total of 94 new bus stops across the whole MetroBus network. Each stop will function as a key interchange between MetroBus, existing bus services and rail.

Every stop will have an on-street information totem called an iPoint. The iPoints will display information about bus arrival times and onward journeys to make it easier for passengers to choose the best route for their journey.

Passengers will be encouraged to buy their tickets from the MetroBus iPoints and via contactless or mobile ticketing, to encourage speedy boarding and reduce journey times.

For more information about MetroBus visit www.travelwest.info/metrobus