Sheffield City Council launches plans to improve public transport on Ecclesall Road and Abbeydale Road

The Connecting Sheffield proposals seek to improve journey times for buses on key commuter routes and include 12-hour bus lanes and the use of Red Routes

By: Emily Pollock
Date: 20/10/2021

Sheffield City Council has announced its plans to make public transport quicker and more reliable for commuters from both Abbeydale Road and Ecclesall Road.

The Connecting Sheffield proposals seek to improve journey times for those who rely on public transport travelling to and from the city centre, giving buses along these key commuter routes greater priority.

They would also help people switch to active travel, choosing to make journeys by walking, cycling or using public transport instead of driving.

The plans include giving buses green light priority across every junction from the city centre to Ecclesall Road South Junction with Abbey Lane and to Abbeydale Road South Junction with Sherwood Glen.

The council has also proposed 12-hour bus lanes, the use of Red Routes to enforce illegal parking, and upgrades to bus stops including better access to real-time bus updates.

Councillor Douglas Johnson, Executive Member for Climate Change, Environment and Transport, said: “We know that it is currently difficult for people to use public transport because buses don’t get priority – they need faster routes to make sure they are consistently reliable.

“The aim of this scheme is to give buses green light priority, alongside other changes that will make public transport a more attractive option. Public transport is a critical part of our future; we will need people to catch the bus to take cars off the road.

“I know it’s been said, but it’s so important I will say it again; we need to make it easier to travel by public transport so people can choose to leave the car at home. This will help reduce traffic congestion, improve the air we breathe, and make us a healthier city.”

The plans follow COP26, the Department for Transport’s National Bus Strategy; Bus Back Better and the submission of the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority’s Bus Service Improvement Plan.

The proposals are funded through the Department for Transport’s Transforming Cities Fund and together form part of the Connecting Sheffield programme.

Sheffield was granted £55m of the £166m awarded to the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority, with an equal share in funding to be used on active travel and public transport improvements across the city.

Nigel Eggleton, managing director at First South Yorkshire said: “We welcome the consultation and feedback that will be received on the proposals to introduce bus priority measures in the Abbeydale and Ecclesall Road areas.

“Reliability is key in encouraging people to use bus services, as it can provide the confidence and reassurance knowing that buses will get people to their destinations on time.

“We are in full support of any measures that are being proposed to improve the journey experience for our customers.”

John Young, commercial director at Stagecoach Yorkshire, said: “We welcome the proposals. It’s important that bus users’ views are heard as part of these proposals.

“We’ve worked closely with our local authority partners to identify bus journey time improvements that will assist punctuality. These are amongst our customers’ top priorities and will help make using the bus more attractive.”

Have your say on the consultation, which will run until Thursday 16th December here.

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