Metrobus to run seven days a week
THE m3 metrobus between Lyde Green and the city centre will soon run seven days a week after it was revealed 120,000 passengers have travelled on the service since it launched.
First Bristol, which started operating the m3 at the end of May, is expanding the Monday to Saturday timetable to include a Sunday service running half-hourly between 9am and 7pm. The new timetable starts from Sunday September 16.
From the same date, the m3 will also provide evening and night journeys between 9pm and 4am on Mondays to Saturdays between the Centre and the University of the West of England (UWE).
To provide extra bus capacity for students and people working at UWE, the company has also registered a new interim 'U3' university service between the city centre and UWE's Frenchay campus.
The U3 service, which also starts on September 16, will be a buy-before-you-board service which will operate up to six times an hour during peak time, Mondays to Fridays, between 7.40am and 9pm. This will complement the m3 metrobus service to provide up to nine departures every hour.
Service U3 will operate during UWE term time only between September 17, 2018 and December 14, 2018.
It is expected that the U3 service will be replaced by the m1 metrobus service when that starts operating in early 2019.
First Bristol managing director James Freeman said: "We are pleased to announce that we are now ready to start operating the m3 metrobus service seven days a week from September 16 onwards. We’ve been rolling out this initial metrobus service very carefully and in a measured way, monitoring performance while the service has been bedding in over the past two months. With the new timetable we’ve taken the opportunity to improve further reliability by making some slight adjustments to the timetable.
"We’ve always said that we would introduce a seven-days-a-week m3 service in September once we had a better understanding of the way the route works. We are really delighted that already, after just two months, an impressive 120,000 passengers have already used the service, exceeding our expectations in every way and we are pleased to see signs of healthy growth.
"We hope many people will now take advantage of the additional journey opportunities on Sundays, in the evenings and at night."
Bristol City councillor Mhairi Threlfall, cabinet member with responsibility for transport, said: "The news about the extra services in the evenings and on Sunday for the m3 is a testament to its success."
First Bristol will start operating the new m2 metrobus service from Monday September 3.
The m2 service will run between Long Ashton Park and Ride and the city centre serving Ashton Gate Stadium, SS Great Britain, Wapping Wharf, Temple Meads Station and Cabot Circus.
It replaces the current 903 service between Long Ashton Park and Ride and the city centre, which is operated under contract to Bristol City Council.
The m2 will use a guided busway for part of its route which allows services to avoid the often congested Brunel Way and Cumberland Basin.