Following the first fflecsi on-demand service pilot in Wales, which launched in two areas of Newport last year, Transport for Wales (TfW), in partnership with Newport City Council and Newport Transport, is undertaking an expansion of the service. A fleet of nine new buses, with 14 seats plus one wheelchair space will now serve the whole of Newport.
TfW said that the new service will complement and enhance the existing scheduled bus services, and will launch this summer. TfW says that fflecsi’s expansion will give more people across Newport access to public transport, with the service operating from 0600 to 2300hrs Monday to Saturday. There will also be a Sunday service from 0900 to 1900hrs. The scheme aims to make it easier for residents to get to work, school or appointments, for shopping, meet friends or connect with other buses and trains.
James Price, TfW CEO, said: “This innovative service is an important part of Transport for Wales and the Welsh Government’s vision to reduce car usage and promote greener forms of travel, while also supporting the local economy and ensuring access to public transport. We have been pleased with the success of the fflecsi pilot in Newport and are delighted to be able to expand the service with nine brand-new buses.”
Deputy Minister for Climate Change Lee Waters said: “I am delighted that the fflecsi bus service will now be rolled out across Newport following the success of the service in Rogerstone and St Julian’s. fflecsi is an exciting new scheme looking at the way we operate our transport system differently in Wales. It gives passengers more control over how they get around by providing them with access to reliable and flexible travel, whilst helping to build a greener Wales.”
Scott Pearson, Managing Director for Newport Transport, commented: “Newport Transport is once more at the forefront of public transport initiatives in the UK as the operator of a city-wide network of urban on-demand bus services. The extended fflecsi service will be a useful complement to our scheduled bus network. As the main bus operator in Newport, we are confident that the interaction between fflecsi and the normal scheduled bus services will provide valuable information enabling our operations team to review the scheduled bus services for the people who live, work, study, shop and socialise in Newport, to ensure we provide a comprehensive customer demand-led network for the future”.
Councillor Roger Jeavons, Newport City Council’s deputy leader and cabinet member for city services, added: “We believe this is a great opportunity to improve the public transport network in the city and offer our residents enhanced bus services that give more choice and more flexibility with their journeys. One of the many positive aspects of fflecsi is that it will complement the scheduled services operated by Newport Bus, not replace them. I’m sure it will be popular with passengers and will have a life beyond the pilot. Newport is leading the way on providing public transport services fit for today and the future.”