Posts Tagged ‘MetroBus service’

Woods Estate Agents, Bradley Stoke, Bristol

So, when WILL we see MetroBus services running in Bradley Stoke?

Posted on Saturday 9th September 2017 at 10:09 pm by SH (Editor)

MetroBus stop on Bradley Stoke Way (opposite Aldi).

There’s no official date, so Journal editor Stephen Horton is left to speculate…

By the time you read this, we will be into the third year of MetroBus roadworks in Bradley Stoke! When Alun Griffiths started their work in earnest on Monday 2nd September 2015, closing the Woodlands Lane junction for “an estimated 18 weeks”, we were told they planned to be out of Bradley Stoke and have the Stoke Gifford By-Pass completed by Christmas 2016. So much for optimism!

With the traffic cones finally coming off most (but not all) of the new bus lanes, it’s not my intention to rake over all those old stories about “uncharted underground services” and “design changes”, but rather to consider when we might be able to actually use the promised new “high quality, fast and reliable” MetroBus services here in Bradley Stoke.

Answering that question, however, has proved rather more difficult than you might have imaged. MetroBus says it is no longer prepared to supply an exact date and its latest public newsletter states simply “autumn 2017”, although it should be noted that enquiries have revealed that this date represents the earliest date that any of the three MetroBus routes across Greater Bristol should start, and does not necessarily apply to all of them. In practice, it is likely to relate only to the Ashton Vale to Temple Meads (AVTM) route.

The key factors that need to be considered are: (1) Completion of the route infrastructure; (2) installation of the IT infrastructure; (3) appointment of a bus operator; and (4) ability and willingness of the appointed operator to commence services.

A report to the West of England Joint Transport Board in March estimated that all construction on the North Fringe to Hengrove Package (NFHP) route, i.e. the one serving Bradley Stoke, would be completed by “autumn 2017”. The Journal is not aware of any official slippage on this date but it is noted that the Stoke Gifford By-Pass is now on the critical path, its projected completion date having slipped to “autumn 2017” from “summer 2017”. Similarly, work at the southern end of Bradley Stoke Way is now scheduled to finish in October 2017 (was given as May 2017 at the start of the year).

More: Ticketing machines will not be piloted until mid-October »

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MetroBus operator announcement delayed (again)

Posted on Saturday 13th May 2017 at 6:52 pm by SH (Editor)

Artist's impression of a MetroBus stop with iPoint.

The announcement about which company (or companies) will be operating services on Bristol’s new MetroBus network has been delayed once again, this time until after the general election on 8th June, the Journal can reveal.

Last summer, a West of England Partnership spokesperson said that negotiations with potential operators were expected to conclude by mid-September (2016), but it was later revealed that talks had been delayed because of the need to consider scenarios where services on a route are run by more than one operator.

Then, earlier this year, it was stated that a formal announcement would not be made until after the Metro Mayor election on 4th May, for fear it might become a political issue – and the same reasoning is behind the latest delay, this time because of the general election.

A spokesperson stressed that any operator can choose to operate services on a MetroBus route, provided they sign up to a defined set of quality standards relating to vehicles, minimum frequencies, maximum fares etc. known as the Quality Partnership Scheme. There is no ‘operator selection’ decision to be made by the officers or members of any local council or authority.

Once the MetroBus roadworks in Bradley Stoke are completed in June, the next sign of activity is likely to be the installation of so-called iPoints at the new MetroBus stops, currently scheduled for August.

An iPoint is an information tower that is approximately 3.2 metres high and 56cm wide. These will incorporate one or two real-time information (RTI) screens, a touch screen to allow customers to buy tickets, a chip and PIN reader for payments and a smartcard reader for topping-up existing smart cards. The ticket purchasing function will supply both single tickets and smartcards.

• For more information on MetroBus, visit travelwest.info/metrobus/all-you-need-to-know

More: Notable dates (key project milestones until autumn) »

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