Sheffield Bus Partnership has been shortlisted for a prestigious Sheffield Business Award, celebrating the significant steps taken to make environmental improvements to buses in the city and help people reduce their impact on the environment.
The recognition underpins a year of significant success for the ground-breaking agreement between First South Yorkshire, Stagecoach in Sheffield, Sheffield Community Transport, Sheffield City Council and South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (SYPTE).
Since it was launched in October 2012, the voluntary partnership has seen a simpler, flexible and convenient bus network for Sheffield.
Labelled a ‘historic’ development by previous Transport Minister of State Norman Baker MP, the ambitious nature of the Partnership and the speed with which it has delivered results has gained recognition from Government and secured an exclusive Better Bus Area grant of £18.3 million to further improve Sheffield’s bus offer.
The introduction of coordinated timetables between Stagecoach in Sheffield and First South Yorkshire to prevent duplication on key routes, discounted multi-operator tickets and newer, greener buses is improving Sheffield’s emissions footprint, has led to an increase in bus passengers of 5.3% in the last three months and 14% more adult fare paying passengers than at the same time as last year.
Investment in the Sheffield Bus Partnership fleet means more than 60% of Sheffield’s buses now meets or exceed European environmental emissions standards, while 400 buses will be replaced to create a 50% fleet of the highest eco standard by 2017.
Investment in Sheffield’s bus fleet is also reducing emissions, with £1.5m awarded as part of the Green Bus Fund to Stagecoach in Sheffield for 19 new hybrid buses that are now in operation.
Dave Alexander, Regional Managing Director for First in South Yorkshire, said: "We are delighted that the Sheffield Bus Partnership has been nominated for the Environmental Award at the Sheffield Business Awards. Sheffield is leading the way across the UK by using partnership to ensure that the quality of bus services is consistently improving to benefit the customers and the local communities."
David Young, SYPTE Deputy Interim Director General, said: “It has been a year of huge progress for Sheffield Bus Partnership and I am delighted that this hard work has been recognised at the Sheffield Business Awards. We took responsibility under this agreement to not only improve Sheffield’s bus offer for our customers, but to reduce the network’s environmental impact too.
“Through investment in the bus fleet and an improved network through bus priority measures and highway improvements we hope to help to improve Sheffield’s air quality and contribute to a greener, cleaner city for all.”
Paul Lynch, Managing Director for Stagecoach in Sheffield, said: “Sheffield Bus Partnership is committed to delivering greener, sustainable bus services.
“Our customers and other stakeholders tell us the environment is a key issue for them, so we’re delighted that the Sheffield Bus Partnership is already delivering on improving the city’s emissions footprint and that this achievement has been recognised by the Sheffield Business Awards, the biggest awards event in the region.”
Councillor Leigh Bramall, Sheffield City Council Cabinet Member for Business, Skills and Development, said: “Sheffield is making progress towards becoming one of the greenest bus fleets in the country, which should help the city reach its goals on improving air quality. It is a great accolade to be recognized at these prestigious awards”.
The Sheffield Business Awards 2013 are organised by Sheffield Chamber of Commerce and The Star. The awards, celebrating their twelfth year, will be presented at a ceremony on Thursday 5 December at Ponds Forge International Sports Centre.
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