[SINGAPORE] The first public bus service package to be tendered out will comprise 24 bus services originating from the western part of Singapore, with 16 of the bus services from SBS Transit and the rest from SMRT.
The Land Transport Authority (LTA) announced this yesterday, a week after introducing the contracting model for public bus services, in a change designed to make bus services more responsive to commuter needs and to inject more competition into the industry.
The LTA had said then that three packages of bus services that use about 20 per cent of existing buses would be tendered out over the next two years. The remaining 80 per cent of buses will continue to be operated by the incumbent operators at negotiated rates.
The bus services in the first package originate from the Jurong East, Bukit Batok and Clementi bus interchanges. To be operated out of the new Bulim bus depot located off Jurong West Avenue 2, they serve largely Jurong East and Bukit Batok.
The LTA said that the package would start with about 380 buses in 2016, and grow to involve about 500 buses in 2021, in tandem with ridership growth and the development of Tengah New Town and Bukit Batok West.
The package will be tendered out in the second half of 2014, for implementation from the second half of 2016.
The Bulim bus depot is scheduled for completion in 2015 and can accommodate about 500 buses. It will also have workshop facilities for the refuelling, maintenance and repair of buses.
The LTA added that details of the second and third bus packages will be announced later.
To safeguard the welfare of bus-industry workers, the Public Transport Tripartite Committee will oversee measures to ensure a smooth transition for those affected.
The committee is chaired by Senior Minister of State for Transport Josephine Teo and comprises the LTA, the Ministry of Manpower and the National Transport Workers Union.