£50 million to be spent on public transport in South Yorkshire to improve bus stops, payment and roads

South Yorkshire leaders are set to sign off a £50 million public transport investment plan for passengers the county.

Saturday, 5th June 2021, 3:54 pm

Sheffield City Region mayor Dan Jarvis and the four council leaders are expected to rubber-stamp plans as part of a package of schemes through the Government’s Levelling Up Fund.

This includes updating bus and tram shelters with more live information displays and replacing a fleet of community buses with electric vehicles.

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File picture of a passenger getting on a bus. Picture Dean Atkins

A raft of other proposals included in the plan include:

> Bringing contactless payment across South Yorkshire public transport

> Payment machines within communities so you can buy before you travel.

> ‘Road improvements’ in traffic hotspots to make bus journeys faster and more reliable journeys

The final package of proposals will be submitted for approval at the meeting of the Mayoral Combined Authority, which takes place on Monday, June 7.

Mayor Mr Jarvis said: “Better transport is one of the foundations on which we will build a better South Yorkshire. We’ve got huge ambitions for our buses, and we’re already investing millions of pounds to get cracking on making real, tangible improvements for passengers.

“We need Government to match our ambitions, so we can get on and build the world class bus service South Yorkshire needs.

“Buses are the backbone of our region. They get people to school, to work, to each other.

“That’s why we’re already investing £6 million in cheaper fares for young people and more than £3 million to start work on better bus stops and our first electric buses.

“Currently funding for buses in London is £76 per head: in Sheffield it is £5 – this is unacceptable and unsustainable. We need proper investment in our bus service now.”

The city region is also set to enter into an ‘enhanced partnership’ with bus firms Stagecoach, First, TM Travel and HCT Group.

This aims to bring the four councils and city region together under one umbrella centralising more decisions as a unit.

Plans could also include a simpler ticketing system which could include setting up plans to introduce a daily cost cap and greater flexibility of fares.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Liam Hoden, editor.