Scotland’s national transport agency, Transport Scotland, published the analysis of responses to two public consultations on Friday, which will help to shape the upcoming Transport Bill.
‘Local Bus Services in Scotland – Improving the Framework for Delivery’ received 315 responses (not including responses from campaigning organisations) and ‘The Future of Smart Ticketing in Scotland’ received 148. These responses have been analysed by the agency and will help inform development of the Bill.
The Transport Bill is aiming to ‘empower Scotland’s local authorities and establish consistent standards to make transport easier, cleaner and smarter than ever before’, according to the agency.
The Bill forms a crucial part of Scotland’s vision to make safe, efficient, cost-effective and sustainable transport accessible to everyone.
Humza Yousaf, Minister for Transport and the Islands, said: “These two consultations have been an important step in the development of the Transport Bill.
“Allowing the public and stakeholders to have their say will help ensure the Bill will respond and reflect the needs of passengers, local authorities, regional transport partnerships and transport providers.
“We are committed to supporting bus services and tackling the historic decline in bus passenger numbers.
“The Bill aims to give local authorities the flexibility to pursue partnership working, local franchising, or running their own buses – allowing local authorities to better respond to local needs.
“We are looking to improve the information available to passengers so that bus travel is more accessible and attractive.
“This Government has a clear vision that all journeys on Scotland’s bus, rail, ferry, subway and tram networks can be made using some form of smart-ticketing or payment.
“We also want to encourage smart payment, in the form of EMV contactless, alongside smart-ticketing, in the form of ITSO which is the UK standard.
“The Bill will help to ensure that governance arrangements are in place to fully enable Scotland-wide smart-ticketing between operators, ensuring participation and a consistency of approach, which was a clear view from the consultation.”