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Bus network progress to be heard at Council Executive

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Three important updates on York’s bus network will be presented to City of York Council’s Executive on Tuesday 20 February.

The first follows a review of the city’s existing bus network, undertaken by independent consultants Momentum. The results of their report will be used for long-term planning but have also informed some more immediate proposals to several services which are due for re-tendering.  These proposals were put out to public consultation late last year. Following feedback from the consultation, when the tenders are issued, responses will be encouraged to provide options to retain services as well as to implement the proposals.

The second key aspect of the report will be to provide an update on progress with the York Bus Service Improvement Plan (‘BSIP’). This will include an overview of the funding position for council supported bus services, including details of an additional £1.15m of BSIP funding awarded by the Department for Transport to City of York Council for 2024/25.

One key aspect of the BSIP funding so far has been to reduce fares for children and young people; this includes free fares for accompanied under 16-year-olds; a £1 single fare for under 18s travelling alone; an extension to the All York Young Person’s Day ticket to now include 17-18 year olds. The all-day ticket is £2.50, and now valid at all times of day. In addition, the Council and bus operators have introduced a new All York Young Person’s Weekly ticket, available to 5–18-year-olds and priced at £12. All of the above will run until December 2024. Journeys need to start & finish within the CYC boundary.

Councillor Pete Kilbane, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economy and Transport at City of York Council, said:

 "Our Council Plan, 'One City, for all', includes our commitment to providing affordable transport for residents to access education, jobs, health and wellbeing support. Using BSIP funds, we are delivering fare concessions; improving real-time information and accessibility at bus stops; and lobbying for wider improvements for bus users, including at Park and Ride sites. We’re committed to becoming a fully electrified bus city and are refreshing our EV strategy including e-bikes and e-scooters."

The final component of the Executive report will be to provide details of York’s latest bid to the DfT for Zero Emission Bus Regional Areas (ZEBRA 2) scheme, with the outcome expected in March 2024. This follows the first round of Zebra funding, where CYC and First Bus were successful in attracting £8.4m of funding to convert the entire First fleet to electric vehicles. If successful, the second round of funding would see CYC work with another York bus operator, Transdev, to electrify their fleet including their depot, plus providing open top tour buses; single deckers with two wheelchair spaces, and smaller midi single-deckers for use on routes which are unsuitable for full-sized buses.

Published: 16th February 2024