The capital’s passenger watchdog has expressed “alarm” at City Hall and Transport for London’s plans to axe and reduce dozens of bus routes in the biggest shakeup to services for more than 16 years.
One new route would be created and five routes would see frequencies increased, but many others would either be ‘restructured’ or shortened, meaning passengers would have to switch buses mid-journey in order to reach their destination
The plans have been defended by TfL as “reflecting how London has changed” but London TravelWatch warns they will mean tens of thousands of passengers having to switch buses or move to more expensive trains or Tubes to carry out their journey.
TravelWatch Chair Arthur Leathley said the body was “concerned” at the scope of the changes which would also increase journey times and make the bus less convenient for those passengers who rely on a local and accessible public transport mode being available to them.
Leathley also suggested that the proposals contradicted the long-established practice of planning bus routes “to minimise the number of changes passengers have to make.”
He added: “We know TfL has challenges in making best use of its fleet, but as a user body, we believe passenger needs must be paramount.”
“These changes will happen unless passengers make their voices heard, so we urge anyone affected to put their views across.”