TfL improves info and adds ‘more than 400,000km’ bus mileage in outer London

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Consultations have been published on proposals to improve buses in the Barnet, Brent, Havering and Wandsworth areas

Transport for London (TfL) has confirmed plans to increase the amount of real-time journey information available across London, which it says will make bus travel easier for users, and proposals have been published for improvements to bus services in the Brent Cross, Harold Wood, Upminster, Stonebridge Park and Tooting areas which it says will add 400,000 bus kilometres to the network. TfL is consulting on proposed extensions of routes to ‘key growth areas’ or town centres, and more direct and frequent services.

As part of the Mayor of London’s pledge to tackle air quality by expanding the city’s ultra-low emission zone (ULEZ), he promised more than one million extra kilometres would be added to outer London’s bus network. The proposed increased and improved services aim to encourage more people to use public transport ahead of the expansion of London’s ULEZ in August and would include extending route 79 to serve Stonebridge Park station and beyond; changing eight routes in the Brent Cross and Cricklewood area to prepare the network to serve the new Brent Cross West rail station, the growing Brent Cross Town community and other developments around Edgware Road; extending route 497 from Harold Wood to Upminster to create a direct link between the two town centres, replacing an indirect link currently offered by two less frequent routes; and extending route 315 from Balham station to the new housing, medical and retail centre at Springfield University Hospital in Tooting.

Further enhancements are planned for Brent, with proposals to redesign bus routes around Wembley Park and Wembley Stadium to support new development in the area, and TfL says it is also continuing work on plans for further expansion across outer London, including in Southall and Haringey.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “I’m proud to have announced an ambitious plan for improving the bus network and delivering an increase of more than one million extra kilometres in outer London ahead of the expansion of the ULEZ London-wide in August this year.

“I really encourage Londoners to share their views on how TfL can further improve bus services in their area. These exciting improvements will strengthen the alternatives to private car use, and make it much easier to get around key parts of outer London by public transport. Buses sit at the heart of the capital’s transport network and these improvements to the network will help us to continue building a better, greener and fairer city for all Londoners.”

TfL says the improvements will build on its existing work to grow the outer London bus network and create faster connections, provide better coverage and more direct, frequent services. It is also introducing a number of other improvements as part of its Bus Action Plan which it says will see faster journeys and bus speeds improved by up to 10%, and an additional 25km of new bus lanes, plus improved connections with better interchanges in outer London.

The action plan also includes the roll-out of bus stop ‘countdown’ signs and hundreds of new or upgraded shelters. More real-time information countdown signs will be installed across London, increasing the total in the capital by 12%.

Real-time information countdown signs will be installed in every London borough, boosting the total in the capital by 12%. New displays will also provide timetable information. TFL