Southend Bus Service Improvement Plan and Enhanced Partnership

Southend Bus Service Improvement Plan

Introduction

We want to make bus travel the first travel choice for everyone in Southend, and by doing so making our communities greener and thriving. We will do this by:

  • making buses more reliable
  • making buses quicker
  • improving the quality of the bus stops and the buses
  • improve the quality and accessibility of bus information

Our Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP) is a bid to the Department for Transport for funding for up to £68.342 million to improve buses across Southend. It sets out our plans for improving buses and how we will work with local bus companies to make those improvements.

With this funding we will transform the bus network through six major strands of work.

Improving all bus services and all stops between Southend Town Centre and Hadleigh, Eastwood, Southend Airport, and Shoeburyness

We will:

  • give buses priority at traffic lights
  • improve bus stops along key roads
  • improve each corridor for buses
  • create a series of Mobility Hubs where you can connect between buses, trains, cycle facilities, and car clubs at Leigh-on-Sea, Southend Hospital, Shoeburyness Town Centre, Thorpe Bay, and Southend Airport

Improving existing bus services

Working with the bus companies to improve existing bus services, we are planning to:

  • provide a minimum frequency of service along the key bus corridors of every 10 minutes during the daytime
  • improve bus service frequencies in the evenings and weekends
  • work with the bus operators to better co-ordinate timetables

Improving cross-town connectivity

We will provide a Mobility Hub in the Town Centre. Also, we will look to introduce new bus services between:

  • Southend Airport, Eastwood, and Leigh-on Sea
  • Southend Airport, Thorpe Bay, and Shoeburyness

Improving ticketing and fares

We will do this by upgrading the Octopus ticket, so it is:

  • available on smartphones
  • through contactless payment
  • can be used on local trains

We will also be trialling a potential £1.50 flat single fare across the town on summer weekends.

Better marketing and promotion of local buses

We will better promote the local bus services, working with the local bus companies and Essex County Council to create a joint marketing and communications plan.

Improving existing vehicles

We will do this by:

  • adding new features to existing engines so that they emit less greenhouse gases
  • requiring that all new buses are low emission vehicles
  • all new buses have audio-visual announcements on board

Our targets

We will judge how successful we are by whether we meet these targets:

  • 25% reduction in journey times (end-to-end) on the 4 main bus corridors
  • 15% reduction in the number of buses arriving late at their final destination on the 4 main bus corridors
  • 95% of Southend residents will be within 400m walking distance of a bus service running every 15 minutes
  • an extra 500,000 trips on local buses every year above the 2019/20 passenger levels
  • 75% of local people satisfied with local bus services by 2027
  • 65% of trips on buses are by non-concessionary pass holders

How we will let you know how we are doing

We will put together a progress report every 6 months. The first report is expected to be published in October 2022.

If you have any ideas to improve local bus services visit our Your Say Southend page to have your say.

To view the full BSIP pdf, please visit our democracy site.

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