The West of England Combined Authority, in partnership with Bath & North East Somerset Council, Bath Spa University and South Gloucestershire Council are working to provide new bus shelters and refurbishments to existing bus stops across the region.
What are we delivering?
As part of the Combined Authority’s strategy to improve public transport infrastructure within the region through better passenger experience and safety, we have identified 10 bus stops to replace or improve. Three are located in Thornbury and seven are in Bath.
In addition, funding has been provided to South Gloucestershire Council to refurbish 37 existing bus stops which will include resurfacing the hardstanding, replacing Perspex panels, providing new timetable displays and a new Real Time Information (RTI) display at 10 of these stops. The shelters marked for refurbishment within South Gloucestershire are located in Yate.
The first stage of upgrades, with further upgrades expected throughout the region across separate programmes, include:
- Upgraded shelters featuring replaced Perspex and improved seating
- New biodiverse ‘Green roofs’
- Improvements to paving
- Real time passenger information (RTPI) displays
- Updated Timetable Display Board at Yate Bus Station and Yate Shopping Centre; and
- Cycle parking facilities
What are the benefits?
The upgrades will enhance passenger experience by creating a safer waiting environment, promoting connectivity and increasing accessibility. By improving passenger experience through upgraded bus shelters it is hoped that this will encourage a shift towards increased usage of sustainable public transport. This could potentially lead to decongestion due to less vehicles on key roads and corridors. The proposed measures are relatively low cost/low disruption and fit with the priorities for local residents and organisations.
As part of the West of England Bus Strategy Consultation (March 2020) respondents ranked several key themes in order of priority, to identify which factors were important to them. At number four was high quality, consistent and easily understood information. Studies have shown waiting time feels longer than time spent moving and good quality bus stop facilities have been shown to reduce how long this waiting time feels. Improvements in this area will be particularly important to vulnerable groups, who are more likely to be impacted by anxiety and uncertainty from poor bus shelters alongside a lack of real-time information.
The Bus Stop Upgrade Programme will provide a consistent and high-quality standard bus stop with improved passenger information. Bus stop infrastructure is visible to everyone and provides a clear indication of investment in public transport services. These relatively low-cost measures for the Bus Stop Upgrade Programme will mean the West of England Combined Authority can unlock growth in bus patronage.
The three bus stops in Thornbury will benefit from the addition of green roofs which will promote biodiversity, by providing habitats for insects and an array of attractive vegetation. They are also a useful tool against climate change, by extracting carbon emissions and acting as a natural temperature regulator for the bus stop beneath. These bus stops will be some of the first to be fitted with green roofs in the West of England and will act as a trial to inform future bus stop infrastructure and learn more about their wider potential across the region.
Which routes will benefit?
- T1 Bristol – Thornbury
- 4 Weston – Odd Down
- 4a Weston – Bath
- A4 Keynsham – Bristol Airport
- 19 Bath – Bristol Parkway
- X39 Bristol – Bath
- Y1 Bristol – Chipping Sodbury
When will the upgrades be delivered?
The upgrades will be delivered between January and March 2023.
How will the upgrades be funded?
The funding for the Bus Stop Upgrade Programme (2022/23) comes from the Transforming Cities Fund (TCF).
Future bus stop upgrades
The City Region Sustainable Transport Settlement (CRSTS) funding allocation also covers a number of projects that aim to upgrade bus infrastructure in the region, including enhancements to existing bus stops. Working alongside the Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP) these programmes will provide the West of England with an accessible, sustainable and reliable public transport network.