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Old July 21st, 2014, 06:59 PM   #61
Kenspeckle
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New buses hitting the streets of Edinburgh

Lothian Buses - 21st July, 2014

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Lothian Buses have received its latest batch of hybrid buses.


The company's latest delivery of new single deck buses are Volvo 7900 Hybrid’s with the latest EURO 6 engine technology.

They feature significant interior improvements from the original ten vehicles received last year, with a more passenger friendly seating arrangement and interior fittings in the Lothian Buses “Classic” interior finish.

All vehicles are fitted with free WiFi and passenger real time information screens with next stop announcements.

The 20 new vehicles will be entering service over the next few weeks on the 30 route which runs from Clovenstone to Musselburgh.

Ian Craig, Chief Executive, Transport for Edinburgh added:

We are delighted to have been able to introduce a further 20 Volvo 7900 Hybrid’s to our fleet. This reflects our commitment to providing a greener and more sustainable travel offering to our passengers and to the local environment.

The Service 30 is very popular with our passengers and we hope that everyone along this route will see the benefit of using these vehicles.
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Old July 21st, 2014, 07:21 PM   #62
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Always good news. London excluded.. Edinburgh must be leading the hybrid busses table in the UK surely?
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Old July 29th, 2014, 12:21 PM   #63
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River Almond ferry service returns to Cramond

Edinburgh Evening News - 29th July, 2014

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City planners have approved a scheme which would see the return of the ferry linking Cramond to the Dalmeny Estate.

The short crossing over the River Almond was axed in 2001 during the foot-and-mouth outbreak. Now it’s hoped plans to restore the service by next summer have been recommended for approval.

A full-time boatsman will use a chain ferry to transport up to 12 people at a time across the stretch of water.

Ambitious plans submitted to the local authority by Cramond Community Council also feature lifts on both banks, allowing passengers to be lowered to water level.

A new jetty and pontoons will also be installed.

The crossing will allow walkers and cyclists to avoid a three-mile trek to the nearest bridge and replaces an old rowing boat which took sightseers across the river for more than a century until it was axed during the foot and mouth disease outbreak in 2001.

Cramond and Barnton Community Council has submitted the plans, which are set to be rubber-stamped by councillors tomorrow.

The group has secured £10,000 in Lottery funding and further funds from the local council-funded neighbourhood partnership for a visitor survey which found more than 15 per cent of the 485,000 annual visitors to the area said they would use the 15-minute service across the River Almond if it was reinstated.

However, the group will still need to raise £300,000 to build the chain ferry device.

It is understood the community council’s plan is to set up a trust company involving the city council which owns the western bank and Lord Rosebery, who owns the estate.

Andrew Mather, chairman of the community council, said there has been major support from the local community and Historic Scotland. He said: “Receiving the backing of city planners is a significant hurdle to have cleared and this will help us greatly in attracting further funding.

“At present, walkers and cyclists face a long walk or cycle to get to Queensferry from Cramond. This will see them across in under 15 minutes. This will be the shortest ferry crossing in Britain and as such will do a lot to increase the attraction of Cramond.

There is a coastal route all the way from Silverknowes but at the moment you see a lot of people arrive at the river and with no crossing to Queensferry they tend to turn back.”

The fee for each crossing is expected to be set at between £1 and £1.50.

The city council report, which appears before the development and management sub-committee, states: “It has the potential to improve pedestrian and cycle accessibility along the city’s waterfront as part of the wider coastal path network.”

Edinburgh Western MSP Colin Keir said: “This proposal has been talked about for a number of years and is widely supported in the community.

“I’m sure it would easily become a tourist attraction in itself, drawing more people to the area as well as linking to Queensferry.”
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Old September 1st, 2014, 04:00 PM   #64
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Edinburgh ‘oystercard’ launches for buses and tram

The Scotsman - 1st September, 2014

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Edinburgh commuters can today purchase a new travel card for easy boarding on bus and tram that can be pre-paid for up to 50 journeys.

Dubbed an “Oystercard for Edinburgh”, the ID imitates the electronic ticketing used across nearly all public transport links in Greater London.

The new “citysmart” card for Capital commuters can be used on Lothian Buses and the Edinburgh Trams after topping up the pass with 20 journeys for £30 – equivalent to £1.50 per journey.

The card can then be topped up with five, ten, 15, 20 or 50 additional journeys from participating shops and kiosks.

But critics have argued that a £3.50 day ticket – which permits unlimited journeys on bus and tram for 24 hours – would be a cheaper option than the citysmart card for commuters taking more than two journeys a day.

However, Ian Craig, chief executive of Transport for Edinburgh, said improving the range of fare options means commuters can “buy and board in a way that suits them best”.

He said: “Everyone has their own preferences for getting around the city and how they like to pay.

“Innovation is at the forefront of our business and along with the introduction of citysmart, we will see our whole fleet fitted with free wi-fi and a further delivery of hybrid vehicles before the end of 2014.”

Ridacard

The new citysmart system differs from the existing Ridacard scheme which provides unlimited travel across Edinburgh’s public transport network but works on a subscription costing £51 a month per adult.

However, the pre-paid citysmart card can be charged with 50 single journeys that will last indefinitely – provided the card is topped up every 180 days.

Passengers will only need to hold the card against the bus ticket machine or tram stop card validator to use it.

Citysmart will be accepted on all Lothian Buses except the Airlink, night buses, service 98 and in Lothian Country Bus zone C; and on the tram except journeys beginning or ending at the airport.

Transport leader Councillor Lesley Hinds said the new integrated ticketing option was a “welcome addition to our joined-up transport system”.

Her deputy, Cllr Adam McVey said the card would help to integrate the tram line with the Lothian Bus service and encourage “as many people as possible to use public transport”.

“This will make public transport more user-friendly and encourage more locals and visitors to opt for tram or bus as their preferred method of travelling around the city.”

Tram expert Lewis Lesley hailed the success of London’s Oystercard and welcomed the introduction of the payment system in Edinburgh.

He said: “In London, the Oystercard has resulted in a huge increase in journeys. This will certainly make things more convenient.”

But transport consultant Robert Drysdale insisted that until the new card offers a discount it will always be a poor relation to the Oystercard in London

He said: “One of the beauties of the Oystercard is that it works out how many journeys you have done in a day, and it only charges you the absolute maximum that you would pay if you had bought a day ticket.

“I think what is needed is something that is both convenient and a bargain. If you’ve got to have 20 journeys on it to start with that’s £30, and you’re not getting any discount at all, so I’m not enthused.”
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Old September 1st, 2014, 10:17 PM   #65
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Sigh. Apologies from the outset for the negativity, but this barely compares to the Oyster. As stated at the end of the article, Oyster is user-friendly in all the ways that this isn't.

There are no caveats within the Oyster zone, like not being able to use nightbuses or not being able to get to Heathrow.

The Oyster pay as you go method doesn't live on a different card -- why have these guys made this a different card to the RidaCard?

Oyster will never overcharge you.

Oyster won't render your card useless (and your credit obsolete?) if you don't visit the city within 6 months.

Oyster won't force me to update with £30.

Oyster will let me auto top-up, meaning I'm never left without credit.

I view this new card as a baby step, and partly in the wrong direction.

Edit: the reason I'm disappointed is that, in this day and age of never using coins, it's a real pain when I head back to Edinburgh. Buses in London don't even accept coins anymore, yet I need to deliberately acquire them in order to travel in Edinburgh. I've been eagerly awaiting a card that I can use when I'm home and out and about for a few days, and this clearly isn't it.

Last edited by gghdev; September 1st, 2014 at 10:48 PM. Reason: Further explanation
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Old September 3rd, 2014, 02:19 AM   #66
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State of the art new buses for services between Edinburgh and West Lothian

The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport - 2nd September, 2014

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Brand new, state of the art buses have hit the streets in Edinburgh and West Lothian. Local bus operator, First Scotland East, has ordered 18 brand new vehicles, each worth around £165k, with five of them already in service transporting customers.

First confirmed that the new vehicles will operate on Services 20, 21 and 22, which link Livingston, Broxburn and other towns and villages in West Lothian with Edinburgh. First also said that the new buses will sport one of the most eye-catching and imaginative designs anywhere in Scotland, but for the time being details of the paint job are being kept a closely guarded secret ahead of a high profile launch in October.

To complement the arrival of the new vehicles First revealed that it will improve the frequency of services between Broxburn and Edinburgh. From October 6th customers will be able to catch a bus every ten minutes at peak times (at the moment First operates three buses an hour).

The 18 Micro-Hybrid vehicles, one of the world’s most fuel efficient buses, come equipped with leather seats, free wifi for customers and extra room for wheelchairs and passengers with buggies. Each new vehicle is also fitted with the latest energy saving technology including a braking power system similar to that used on Formula 1 racing cars, which re-uses energy to power other parts of the bus. The Micro-Hybrid buses are also lighter than a conventional single deck bus and, together with advanced engine technology, are around 30% more fuel efficient.

West Lothian councillors Dave King and Carl John were amongst the first to step on board the new vehicle. Dave King said: “Many of my constituents rely on First’s services and therefore I’m delighted that the company has invested in its fleet. We want to encourage more people to use public transport, rely less on the private car and thereby help reduce congestion in West Lothian. These new state of the art buses will undoubtedly attract new customers.”

Carl John said: “I’m thrilled that First has invested £3m in 18 new vehicles for Livingston. I understand that the new buses are amongst the most fuel efficient in the world and will help reduce emissions in West Lothian. The buses look fantastic and are certainly very smooth and comfortable to travel in.”

Managing Director of First Scotland East, Paul McGowan, said: “Customers can expect to benefit from an improved service as a result of these new vehicles. Journeys will be more pleasant, more comfortable, smoother and passengers will be able to keep connected whilst on the move with our free wifi. In addition, as you would expect with any new vehicle, we will encounter much less faults and breakdowns.”

He continued: “We’ve a range of exciting initiatives planned in the coming months for our West Lothian services, including the introduction of an improved frequency between Broxburn and Edinburgh. Our £3m investment in 18 new vehicles is a key part of our commitment to improve services and attract more people on to our buses.”

The new buses will operate on Service 20, 21 and 22 which combined provide customers with services every ten minutes between West Lothian and Edinburgh.
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Old October 22nd, 2014, 05:26 PM   #67
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Lothian Buses to take delivery of 20 more hybrid buses

STV Edinburgh - 22nd October, 2014



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The Scottish Government has provided funding to help Lothian Buses buy 20 more hybrid buses from Volvo. The buses have an electric motor and a diesel engine in them.

It is hoped that the low emissions vehicles will help tackle air pollution problems in the city, and follows a delivery of 10 similar buses to the firm in 2013.

Transport Minister Keith Brown said: “The Scottish Government is committed to public transport and to our ambitious climate change target of reducing carbon emissions by 42 per cent by 2020.”
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Old October 23rd, 2014, 05:02 AM   #68
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Those buses look like a real solid, quality product.
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