Translink given £10m of funding for new buses

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Transport Minister Chris Hazzard with Translink CEO Chris Conway

Wrightbus to supply at least 20 of the vehicles, representing £4m of the funding

Translink is to purchase an extra 45 buses as part of borrowing agreed with the Government in Northern Ireland, the Belfast Telegraph reported.

The overall investment is expected to total £10m. Of the vehicles, 20 will be StreetDecks purchased from Ballymena-based Wrightbus, with a total value of £4m. A Translink spokesman told CBW that it would also be procuring Caetano Invictus-bodied Scania double-decker coaches for Goldline services, and Optare Versas and Solos for Ulsterbus. All vehicles will be Euro 6.

The funding is part of wider investment in measures designed to stimulate the economy linked to the Stormont House Agreement.

Announcing the investment Infrastructure Minister Chris Hazzard said: “Improving the public transport network is a key outcome in the draft Programme for Government and the £10m allocated demonstrates the Executive’s commitment to achieving this.

“This funding secures 45 new buses for Ulsterbus, Goldline and Metro which will modernise our fleet, improve reliability and enhance our offer to customers. These will be Euro 6 buses which meet the lowest emission standards and a number of the vehicles will be procured locally, supporting the local economy.”

Translink Group CEO, Chris Conway, said the new buses would serve Metro, Ulsterbus and Goldline routes.

“We are pleased that approximately £4m of this investment will include 20 new MetroDeckers procured from local supplier Wrightbus.

“Buses will be fitted with Euro 6 diesel engines with the lowest emissions to ensure we deliver energy efficiency and protect the environment.

“This investment supports our strategy to grow public transport which is one of the key outcomes in the draft Programme for Government.”