Bus

Bus crossing tram lines
The bus is the UK's main form of public transport. Find out more about how the industry works, the case for investing in bus and what we are doing to make bus services better

Resources

Number crunch 2019: Urban transport trends in changing times

June, 2019

We are living in rapidly changing times. Big shifts are taking place in urban transport trends.

Number crunch 2019 is the second in our Number crunch report series and provides an updated overview of the key trends over the last ten years, as well as taking a look at what the new and most recent data is telling us. The report also investigates some new issues – including housing need and social inclusion.

In these changing times, the case for coordinated and integrated transport planning at the city region level is stronger than ever. So is the case for long term funding frameworks for local urban transport rather than stop-start funding as is currently the case.

How people respond to the experience of bus travel and the implications for the future of bus services

May, 2019

This literature review - carried out by SYSTRA for the Urban Transport Group - aims to appraise the existing evidence base on the range of factors that influence how people respond to the experience of bus travel, with a focus on the social-emotional experience of bus travel and on the experiences of different socio-demographic groups.

The review does not aim to act as a ‘to-do’ list to complete in order to improve bus travel experiences. Any learnings taken should acknowledge that the bus services assessed in the literature are often hyper-local and therefore are experienced in a very individual market.

The cross-sector benefits of backing the bus

March, 2019

This report highlights how investing in bus services is key to achieving a wide range of policy objectives across Government. 

The report also finds that the way in which bus services are funded is mired in complexity, with no oversight within Whitehall of how the various funding streams from different Government departments impact on bus services overall.

It also shows that all the main forms of funding for bus services are under severe pressure – in particular those that come indirectly from the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government which support bus services that bus companies will not provide on a commercial basis. The report calls for a new ‘Connectivity Fund’ – which would bring together existing bus funding together with funding from other Government Departments into a significantly enhanced and ring-fenced pot for local government to support bus services.

What's driving bus patronage change? An analysis of the evidence base

January, 2019

This report explores a range of factors relevant to bus patronage decline, under the themes of social and economic change; alternatives to the bus; and public attitudes to bus travel.

It finds that changing travel habits as a result of different lifestyles and working patterns, wider demographic and economic shifts, the rise of on-demand services, exemplified by runaway growth in Private Hire Vehicles, are amongst the many background factors affecting patronage.

The report also looks at areas where bus use is high or is growing and seeks to draw some initial conclusions about common denominators.

Topic: 

The place to be: How transit oriented development can support good growth in the city regions

January, 2019

This report examines ‘transit oriented development’ - the principle of putting public transport front and centre in new residential and commercial developments, with the aim of maximising access by public transport, encouraging walking and cycling, and minimising the need to own and use private cars.

The report suggests that transit oriented development has the potential to meet housing need without undermining the green belt or creating more traffic congestion and sprawl. It also examines other areas where it can deliver wide-ranging benefits, such as to local economies; air quality and carbon emissions; social inclusion, employment and skills; health; and public transport patronage.

The place to be sets out a five point plan on how to realise more building developments which are based around sustainable, public transport and active travel.

About towns: How transport can help towns thrive

November, 2018

This report examines the key role that transport interventions can play in supporting post-industrial towns.

It features case studies from the UK and the wider world of how different types of interventions - from transport’s role as an ‘anchor institution’ for local economies and as an employer, through to how transport interchanges can act as ‘gateways’ and sources of civic pride and renewal -  can achieve results.

A key finding of the report is that isolated capital interventions in transport infrastructure are insufficient in themselves. Instead, more co-ordinated programmes of transport capital and revenue investment and support are needed if towns are to truly thrive. 

Pages

Government proposals to ban CCTV enforcement of parking and implications for buses

January, 2014
On 6th December 2013 the Government issued a consultation document on local government parking strategies. The stated aim of the proposals is to help with the cost of living and to support local shops. In this briefing we concentrate on the CCTV enforcement proposals – and in particular the implications for buses.
Topic: 

Concessionary Travel: The funding timebomb for PTEs

November, 2012
The English National Concessionary Travel Scheme has been highly successful in giving older and disabled people the freedom of free off‐peak bus travel. But the costs of the scheme are rising fast whilst funding is falling. This financial ‘timebomb’ will lead to severe cuts in other frontline transport services unless a sustainable funding solution can be found.
Document: 

Pages

About towns: How transport can help towns thrive

November, 2018

This report examines the key role that transport interventions can play in supporting post-industrial towns.

It features case studies from the UK and the wider world of how different types of interventions - from transport’s role as an ‘anchor institution’ for local economies and as an employer, through to how transport interchanges can act as ‘gateways’ and sources of civic pride and renewal -  can achieve results.

A key finding of the report is that isolated capital interventions in transport infrastructure are insufficient in themselves. Instead, more co-ordinated programmes of transport capital and revenue investment and support are needed if towns are to truly thrive. 

Policy futures for urban transport

September, 2018

The latest edition of Policy futures for urban transport emphasises how a new deal on funding and powers is essential to keep the UK's cities moving forward.

The report sets out the 10 key policy changes that are needed to make cities healthier, fairer and more prosperous.

These include further devolution of rail services; greater funding for buses; reform of taxi and Private Hire Vehicle legislation; an ambitious strategy to encourage more cycling and walking; a long term investment plan for urban rail services; and a visionary national policy framework on air quality.

Number crunch: Transport trends in the city regions

April, 2018

Our report, Number crunch: Transport trends in the city regions, identifies some of the most defining patterns of the past decade (and projected future trends) that are changing the face of the UK’s city regions, and the way that people travel within them.

Ageing urban populations, rapid bus passenger decline and huge growth in private hire vehicles are just some of the dramatic shifts taking place in UK cities.

The report draws on data from our unique, free and interactive online tool ‘Data Hub’, which allows users to generate bespoke analysis, graphics and charts of transport, economic and population data.

Policy Futures

September, 2017

Policy futures for urban transport sets out how, with more focused governance in place, the city regions are delivering major investment programmes including on public transport, highways and active travel, and smart ticketing. The report says that - with the right national policy framework - further and faster progress can be made, including:

  • ensuring that the benefits of transformative technological change are maximised including new ways of paying for access to transport, connected and autonomous vehicles and data;
  • that barriers between different sectors are broken down so that the benefits that transport can bring to achieving wider policy goals - in areas like health, employment and education - are fully realised.

The Scandinavian way to better public transport

August, 2017

‘The Scandinavian Way to Better Public Transport’ shows how transport authorities in three Scandinavian countries (Sweden, Denmark and Norway) are using devolved powers to transform public transport for the better - and sets out the lessons that the UK could learn.

Topic: 

Total Transport: a better approach to commissioning non-emergency patient transport?

March, 2017

‘Total Transport’ schemes pool resources and vehicle fleets from across the public sector which are currently used to provide separate mainstream, social services, education and healthcare transport provision. Through pooling and coordination a better overall service can be provided at less cost to the taxpayer. However, it is proving challenging to get NHS non emergency patient transport services to participate in such schemes despite the major savings that could accrue from doing so. This briefing explains the scale of the potential opportunity from Total Transport schemes which include the NHS.

Policy Futures for Urban Transport - our vision and roadmap

September, 2016

This report sets out our vision for how future UK urban transport policy could unfold in a way that enables the nation’s urban areas to deliver smart and sustainable growth that has far-reaching benefits. It looks at the great strides our city regions have already made and proposes fifteen ways in which national government and transport authorities can work together to create the transport networks urban areas need in order to fully realise their potential.

Horizon scan of implications of technological and social change

November, 2015

This report aims to provide decision makers with a guide to the implications for urban transport of transformative social and technological change and how they can best respond. 

The report (which was produced in collaboration with Arup Foresight) identifies four key overarching trends: 

  • Changes in demographics and lifestyles and the rise of the sharing economy alter mobility choices
  • Urbanisation, climate change and the need to improve air quality put pressure on transport systems
  • Advances in technology and increased digital connectivity make transport infrastructure smarter and more efficient 
  • More powers are devolved to cities and city regions which results in more innovation and leadership in responding to urban challenges in locally appropriate ways

Pages

National road and rail networks: draft national policy statement

February, 2014
Response to consultation on the overall policy against which the Secretary of State for Transport will make decisions on applications for nationally significant infrastructure projects on the national road and rail networks.
Consulting body: 
Department for Transport

Pages

National Infrastructure Commission is right to make devolved transport funding for cities a key test for Government’s future infrastructure plan

Monday, May 13, 2019

 

The National Infrastructure Commission’s call for Government to make devolved funding for urban transport to cities a key test of the Government’s forthcoming National Infrastructure Strategy is hugely welcome, says the Urban Transport Group.

South Yorkshire transport chief is new Chair of Urban Transport Group

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Stephen Edwards, the Executive Director of South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (SYPTE), is the new Chair of the Urban Transport Group.

His appointment follows the end of the two-year term of outgoing Chair Tobyn Hughes, Managing Director at Nexus.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Bus