Service scheduled to commence on 30th October
At last some real progress with the Thames bus trial. The Waikato Regional Council have asked for tenders from bus operators. Tenders will close on 15 October and the service is scheduled to start on 30 October subject to a final go-ahead from the successful bus operator.
The service will begin as a trial for six months, and if successful will be extended for a further 39 months subject to confirmation of funding being made available beyond the 6 month trial period and ongoing performance evaluation.
The tender documents require that the bus have a minimum of 14 seated passengers and the operator will have to keep to the proposed timetable.
The proposed route is almost identical to the one that was originally put to the Community Board back in February.
The only slight change is that the service will now take a short detour into the Richmond villas complex on Richmond Street. The proposed bus stops are shown on the following plan but these will be subject to change depending on traffic safety requirements.
It’s exciting that we’re only a few weeks away from the commencement of the service. The Council, with help from sponsors Richardson’s Real Estate, Thames will soon make every effort to publicise the service, the timetable, location of bus stops etc.
Then it’s up to the public to really support the bus service during the six-month trial to ensure that the service continues for another 39 months beyond that. The motto will be – “use it – or lose it”