Sheffield buses: cheaper fares and new real-time shelter displays proposed to improve city’s bus services
‘Ambitious’ plans to transform Sheffield’s bus services have been set out by South Yorkshire mayor Dan Jarvis and local authority leaders.
The South Yorkshire Bus Service Improvement Plan sets out measures to modernise and upgrade bus travel throughout the region if government funds are made available.
If fully funded, the proposal will see bus shelters replaced and new real-time displays installed, plus free travel for everyone aged 18 and under in South Yorkshire and a price cap on daily and weekly fares.
An all-electric bus fleet would also be introduced before 2040, starting with community transport vehicles.
South Yorkshire mayor, Dan Jarvis, said: “This is the blueprint for the transformation of our bus services I’ve been working towards since I took office.
“It’s about a fundamentally different future for transport in our region. I want to build an affordable, accessible, efficient, sustainable network so we can move away from the ever-growing reliance on cars, which will eventually choke our region if we continue as we are.
“This plan is about improving our quality of life, helping people get to better jobs, boosting our businesses, and safeguarding the health of our children and of our communities. And it is vital to help us to our target of Net Zero carbon emissions."
He added: “We need to make it cheaper and simpler for people to use our buses, so they become the default choice for travel. We need to make them more accessible, fast and reliable, because a cheap bus is not enough if it doesn’t get you where you need to go, when you need to go. And we need to make them emissions-free, so the air we all breathe is cleaner, and we do our bit to tackle the climate crisis.”
Sheffield City Council leader, Terry Fox, said: “We have real ambition for the city’s public transport. Quite simply, it must play an integral part in everyday life – helping to get people to the right places, quickly and cheaply.
“For too long, government underfunding and privatisation has stripped away local services. We’re hoping to turn the tide, and the city’s roadmap for transformation can help do this and get our bus service to where it should be.
“We’re committed to doing everything we can, and we are already working on plans to improve the reliability for bus services in Sheffield through the Transforming Cities Fund, and the Bus Service Improvement Plan will support us in our ambition to make public transport an accessible, realistic option for everyone, to get them where they need to go quickly and reliably.”
The submission of the plan to government marks the culmination of months of work, hearing the voices of bus passengers, operators and stakeholders, from across South Yorkshire.
It brings together local initiatives and successful recent funding bids as well as new demands to the government that are intended to transform local bus services.
More than £70 million of investment has already been secured to upgrade bus lanes, improve bus routes, and tackle bus congestion.