Bus passengers in Portsmouth will continue to enjoy easy travel following investment from the council to ensure six essential bus routes continue to connect local communities.
Portsmouth City Council carried out a tendering process, and agreed to provide subsidies to secure the 12, 13, 14, 18, 22 and 25 bus routes in the city.
The council reviewed the tenders, and a decision was made to award the contracts to operators based on cost to ensure the most financially sustainable services for the city. First Solent will continue to provide the number 22 bus service. The 12, 13, 14, 18 and 25 services will be provided by Stagecoach from 3 September.
Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson, Cabinet Member for Transport, said: “It is essential we ensure the continuation of important bus services in the city. I know from speaking with the residents of Portsmouth how much of a positive impact these bus routes have on people’s lives.
“Working in partnership with our local bus companies First Solent and Stagecoach, we are delivering our Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP) and Zero Emission Bus Regional Area scheme which aims to provide a sustainable bus network that is high quality, affordable, reliable and accessible for our residents, and to deliver 62 electric buses to the city, which will have a positive impact on air quality in Portsmouth too.”
Public transport is important to Portsmouth, and the council works in close partnership with the local bus operators First Solent and Stagecoach to help transform bus travel. Both operators are supporting the council’s Bus Service Improvement Plan, improving bus services across the city and making public transport more accessible and affordable for everyone. First Solent is also providing match funding for the Zero Emission Bus Regional Area scheme to bring electric buses to Portsmouth by March next year.
Simon Goff, Managing Director, First Bus South*, said: “We’re proud to be the first operator to bring electric buses to Portsmouth, leading the way in greener transport and transforming bus travel for local people.
“With a long history of serving communities in Portsmouth, we’re excited to continue to run the 22 bus service, as well as increasing the frequency of our core network for customers across the city.”
Marc Reddy Managing Director, Stagecoach, said: “We’re really excited to be awarded the contracts for services 12,13,14, 18 and 25. It’s fantastic to work in partnership with the Council to run these vital bus services for residents across the city.
“We look forward to welcoming new customers onto our buses later this summer – especially with fares still reduced under the Government’s £2 fare capping scheme”.
For more information about public transport in Portsmouth visit https://travel.portsmouth.gov.uk/public-transport/.
* First Solent is operated by First Bus South