Action needed to tackle falling bus speeds

Action needed to tackle falling bus speeds

21 December 2018

London’s transport watchdog today expressed alarm at forecasts in TfL’s latest business plan that bus speeds will decline even further than they had previously anticipated. This means buses will be even slower in the future.

London TravelWatch Chair, Arthur Leathley said: 'TfL’s latest business plan makes really depressing reading for London’s beleaguered bus passengers. The previous business plan suggested that bus journey times would not recover from their recent decline. This plan shows bus journey times getting even longer. Combine this with the cuts to services that are being consulted on and it is easy to see why bus passengers are abandoning their services. However, for many passengers there is not a choice and they will have to continue to use slow services and suffer the inconvenience. This is dreadful news.'

Arthur Leathley continued: 'London TravelWatch has previously demanded that TfL prioritise bus services on all the roads they use*. We are told that measures are being taken, but too little is happening. We will be raising this issue at our Board meeting in January with TfL’s Managing Director of Surface Transport, Gareth Powell.'

The graph on this page shows the rolling average of bus speeds across London as measured using TfL’s I-bus system and projected bus speeds taken from TfL’s latest business plan.

Further information

  1. London TravelWatch is the operating name for the London Transport Users Committee. We are the official watchdog representing the interests of transport users in and around London, and independent of the transport operators and government. London TravelWatch is sponsored and funded by the London Assembly, part of the Greater London Authority.
  2. Follow London TravelWatch on Twitter and You Tube
  3. For more information, please contact the London TravelWatch press office on 020 3176 5941 or 07734 055494.
  4. London TravelWatch’s blueprint for better bus speeds includes:
  • Longer operational hours for the Red Routes – some should be 24/7
  • A review of parking, waiting loading and bus lane operational hours along bus routes by the London boroughs
  • A review of discounts and exemptions from congestion charging – PHVs should no longer be exempt and residents discounts could be reduced
  • Longer operation of the congestion charging zone – to operate, say 6am until 10pm, Monday to Sunday
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