UWE bus service sees 100% increase in usage

Issue date: 19 November 2008

One of the Ulink single deck buses The number of passengers using the University of the West of England's bus service, Ulink, has doubled in its first year of operation. Daily passenger numbers have increased from around 2,500 in autumn 2007, to over 6,000 in autumn 2008.

Due to its popularity and the University's efforts to encourage the public to use it, the service is now being increased to meet demand.

From Monday 24 November service enhancements include:
•U1/U2 - increased to four times an hour along Gloucester Road to Cabot Circus
•U3 - increased to 3 per hour
•U5 - extra departure, from BRI at Marlborough St, 07.35

Full details of the Ulink services are available at www.ulinkbus.info

The Ulink service was set up by UWE in 2007, following the award of a contract to Wessex Connect, to provide an efficient transport service between the University's Campuses and key locations in Bristol. The services were opened to the public shortly after the initial launch and all-England travelcards are accepted after 9.00.

Steve Ward, UWE's travel planner says, “Since the start of this academic year we have had a huge increase in demand for the service. We are now responding to customer demands with an enhanced service, and making specific improvements where demand is high. For example the early morning service from outside the BRI in central Bristol at 07.35 enables students to make an 8.30 lecture at Frenchay.

“The Ulink service is a key part of UWE's sustainability strategy. We are in the top three of the UK's sustainable universities and we will continue to improve our transport planning to fit in with this. By being responsive to customer needs and demand for the service, we aim to continue to enhance the Ulink service and to provide a practical and viable alternative to car use to and from our Campuses.”

The bus service now has five routes compared to the initial three when it was set up, with the latest addition being a service via Whiteladies Road to Broadmead (U5).

The five routes serve Broadmead and Cabot Circus up to ten times an hour.

Editor's notes

1. UWE won a silver award in the West of England Travel Plan awards run by the Avon area local authorities, in September 2007.
Link to press release

2. In July 2007 the University of the West of England was ranked third out of all UK universities by the annual People and Planet survey which measures sustainability and highlights those institutions which have made the greatest strides in achieving this. The university has jumped five places since last year's survey, in which UWE was ranked eighth.
Link to press release

3. Ulink facts:
•Ulink buses are mainly single deck, new and have space for buggies and wheelchairs.
•Ulink routes are now available to the public. Tickets are available on the bus or a monthly pass is available from McColls in the Galleries.
•The 'Ulink' buses serve the routes that students and staff have identified as most needed. Service U1 and U2 run from Frenchay Campus to Cabot Circus via Gloucester Road. U1 continues to Bower Ashton Campus via Temple Meads. The U3 service runs from Frenchay Campus to Fishponds, then to Cabot Circus. The U5 service runs from Frenchay Campus to Broadmead via Clifton. Most services run from 0700 to 21.30.

Full details of the Ulink services are available at: www.ulinkbus.info


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