A local bus company says it is pulling out the stops in an attempt to encourage more people in Milngavie and Bearsden to ditch the car and hop on the bus.
Glasgow Citybus, part of West of Coast Motors, says it is making a number of changes in the new year to make bus more accessible to both old and new customers.
The changes have been welcomed by local Green MSP Ross Greer, who described the news as “brilliant for local residents.”
This will include operating more night-time journeys, serving more of Glasgow’s city universities and colleges and introducing a mobile app and website which allows users to buy discounted tickets, track their bus and navigate to the nearest bus stop.
The upgrades follow an online customer satisfaction survey which targeted existing and potential customers. From the findings, the bus company discovered many local people wanted later buses and would welcome a mobile app to buy bus tickets, track and plan journeys.
The survey also highlighted the majority of customers found Glasgow Citybus drivers polite, ticket prices reasonable and travelling to work the most popular reason for travel followed by education.
The changes to the route will take effect from Monday 06 January and include:
Service 15, Milngavie to Glasgow, operating an extended route to Glasgow Cathedral and serving Strathclyde University, City of Glasgow College and Glasgow Caledonian University.
Service 17, Duntocher to Glasgow, operating late night journeys.
From 1815, service 17 will operate every 30 minutes, with the last bus departing Duntocher at 2201 and the last bus out of Glasgow at 2315.
In Duntocher, service 17 will no longer serve Auchentoshan Avenue or Morrison Street. It shall go straight along Beeches Road to the end then turn left.
Richy Graham, operations manager at Glasgow Citybus, said: “Our bus service and ticket options are determined by our customers travel requirements and we take their feedback seriously.
“On service 17 the last bus currently departing Duntocher and Glasgow is 1825 and 2005 respectively, we have listened to our customers and are extending this to 2201 and 2305. With service 15 we recognise the importance of catering for our student market and will now serve the universities.”
The West Coast Motors mobile app, which will include Glasgow Citybus services will be launched at the end of January. The app will launch with Glasgow Citybus ticket promotions of £2.99 for an unlimited 24-hour ticket and a £14.99 for an unlimited weekly ticket.
Richy continued: “If you’ve not used a bus in a while it can be quite tricky to know where to board, frequency of bus and how much your ticket costs. Our app and website will allow people to do all of this plus so much more.
“We really hope our changes encourage customers to use the bus more often plus entice more people out of cars and onto bus, after all one of our buses could take up to 49 cars off the road.”
The news of investment has been welcomed by Ross Greer, MSP, he added: “This is brilliant news for local residents, who’ve been telling me for years of the need for expanded bus services locally. As a regular user of the 15 and 17 myself, I know exactly how helpful the extended route and later operating times will be. To go from facing the potential loss of the 15 just a few months ago to this is a huge success story.
“Glasgow Citybus have listened to their passengers and invested in their service. That faith now needs reciprocated by local residents. These services will only continue if enough people use them. With congestion increasing, local air pollution a real issue and Scotland’s transport emissions rising despite the climate emergency, leaving the car at home and getting on the bus is something we all need to do as much as possible. Expanded, affordable bus services make that far easier.”