Saturday, 24 March 2012

Bus improvement grant awarded to Torbay Council

A grant of £514,700 has been awarded to Torbay Council to improve bus services in the area.
Funding will be used to integrate services, improve bus stations and install real-time information (RTI) on bus arrivals.
It will also aim to reduce delays to the bus services, particularly the number 12, by management of traffic lights to give priority to buses. These measures would be implemented in Brixham, Preston and by the Grand Hotel in Torquay as well as Shiphay Lane. Personally I feel the only way to prevent hold-ups in Preston is by building a new Preston by-pass but that would involve knocking down most of Preston so that idea is out.
Control centres would be set up so bunching of busses can be better managed and RTI (Real Time Information) via displays at bus stops and via smart phones would be used in an attempt to persuade more people to use buses. The thinking here is if car drivers know the bus service is reliable they will use buses more ( hint £1.45 per litre) and if the up and coming younger generation are able to use their smart photos to get timetable information they won't need to learn how to use the paper timetables which Stagecoach provide on most bus stops. Torbaybusroutes do some thing similar already.
It would appear that none of this grant is to be used to subsidise any bus services or to keep the reimbursement paid to bus companies under the Concessionary Bus Pass scheme at a resonable level. So we could end up with fewer bus routes but better managed buses on those routes/route? (12) still operating.
More information is available here
at the BBC and here at Torbay Council's web site.
The council's web site link explains carefully what is to be done with the money.


Cabbie J said...

Most of the carriageway along the 12 route through Preston (Torquay bound, anyway) is wide enough that a bus lane could be accomodated.

But it would require the road to be an urban clearway and for considerable roadworks which would cost a lot more than £500k.

One thing I don't understand is the realtime information displays, particularly on the 12 route. Whenever I catch a bus I don't bother with the timetable because the 12 runs very frequently anyway.

David said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
David said...

I expect most people use the 12 service in the same way, turn up and a bus will come in the next ten minutes. I agree will helping buses though Brixham and the other places but RTI is a waste of money. A small amount of the grant could be spent putting Bus Stop Temporally Out Of Use signage between Belgrave Rd and The Gas Works for when the sea comes over the sea wall.

Anonymous said...

Will the grant be spent on the wrong things? Toilets at the Paignton bus/ coach station VERY important, better customer facilities there - covered waiting area, look at other towns bus/coach stations.