Xelabus of Eastleigh has been awarded a three-year contract to operate the X21 bus service to Southampton Science Park, linked with Chilworth Business Centre and Southampton University.
The exclusive contract has required a new ADL Enviro200 recently purchased by Xelabus to be branded in a bright silver livery with University decals. The service operates at peak times connecting the city with the Science Park as well as the nearby Parkway Station and Airport.
Xelabus has also joined forces with Asda Superstores at Chandlers Ford, the retailer offering £5 shopping vouchers for park employees travelling on the X21 during their lunch break.
Philip Blair, Chairman of Xelabus, said: “We were approached by the Science Park and have been working with them to design a route for employees, with a timetable and range of facilities to encourage use. In addition to WiFi, leather seats and a regular driver, we also have full safety procedures in place for safe travel including a hand sanitiser dispenser on board.”
The operator says that, despite the current crisis, the service has so far already attracted considerable use; it expects that numbers will increase however when more employees return to the office in the autumn. It added that the Asda vouchers had also been well received.
Xelabus had secured all college operations pre-COVID, and has also been able to win new school and college operations including Sparsholt Agriculture College in Winchester and St George’s College in Southampton.