Friday, 16 September 2011

Busway in this week's local papers

The Hunts Post (14 September, page 7) has a letter about refunds of money lost in ticket machines, and how difficult it is to understand the complicated range of fares if you are new to the busway. Bob Menzies of Cambridgeshire County Council says he is reviewing the way information is presented on the machines to ease these problems. This information notices, which is posted at busway stops, explains about how the fares system works.

On page 14 of the same issue is an article Busway journey times are extended. It is claimed by the bus operators that although the timetable is now slower than it was before the busway, the actual times for journeys are quicker. Stagecoach says that its punctuality has increased from 78% to 94% as a result of the timetable changes on 2 September. This does not tally with my experience. I have used the busway almost 40 times since it started running, yet  only 27% of my journeys got me to my destination on time.  Most of my trips are in the morning and evening travel-to-work peak times. But I've also travelled midday, evenings and Sundays. And the evening journeys I've used so far have reached the remarkably bad punctuality rate of 0%.

Good news. The Norris Museum in St Ives has doubled its number of visitors as a result of the busway.

The Huntingdon & St Ives News & Crier (15 september, page 6) carries a letter about traffic jams on Harrison Way, the A1096 road between the A14 and St Ives. The writer says the busway is adding 20 minutes to her car commute time. She also notes that the Saturday service now takes longer than the 20 minutes it used to take. Well, yes. The busway is definitely slower at off peak times than the old 55 route.

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