Blueprint for future bus services in Blackpool to be sent to the Government by the end of the month - this is what it will mean for commuters

A blueprint for future bus services around Blackpool has been agreed and is due to be submitted to government by the end of this month.

Thursday, 14th October 2021, 11:39 am

All councils must publish a Bus Service Improvement Plan in order to be eligible for a share of a £3bn pot of government funding.

In a report to the executive, which approved the plan, Coun Neal Brookes, cabinet member for highways and transport, said the aim was to get more people to switch from car to bus use.

He said: “Buses should be seen as reliable and cost effective transport for all, helping to support the local economy and address climate change.

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The Blackpool bus improvement plan has been drafted

“Thanks to its innovative and far-seeing operators, Blackpool benefits from a modern bus fleet and a network that is the envy of many.

“This can be built on to bring the accessibility, environmental and decongesting benefits of increased bus use to the fore.

“Having secured its network through the Covid pandemic, the council will now work with operators in the envisaged enhanced partnership to grow ridership rapidly and to achieve modal shift from car to bus.

“With the bus fleet likely to start the transition from diesel to electric with the next vehicle purchases, the impact on air quality and greenhouse gas emissions will be considerable.”

The council has held talks with operators including its own company Blackpool Transport, Stagecoach and Coastliner with proposals crossing local authority boundaries in order to cover the whole Fylde coast.

Priorities include introducing new services linking residential areas with employment opportunities, the Airport Enterprise Zone and Blackpool Victoria Hospital.

It is hoped to increase services in the evenings and weekends, while improvements are also needed to bus stops and shelters.

More access to real time timetable information is required, especially in the town centre, as well as simplified ticket offers.

Four additional bus lanes could also be created on main routes to improve punctuality and reliability.

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