A public transport headache for Mayor Johnson.

During the London Mayoral election, Boris seemed to have a little trouble with the figures for the “replacement Routemaster”. First it was £6m. Then £25m. It seemed a figure was finally settled on at £100m. His indecision and lack of knowledge on his own policy sent even Jeremy Paxman to despair:

Now it’s been reported by the Guardian that the public subsidy for the TFL bus network, including costs for the design and implementation of the Routemaster successor will be in the region of £653m to £766m, according to accounting firm KPMG. Further more, analysts at Deutsche Bank have predicted the fares could rise by 11% to finance the policy. Val Shawcross, the Labour AM and deputy chair of the Assembly’s transport committee has openly criticised the policy in light of the cost revealations: “We all understand that the TfL budget is tight and it is a silly vanity project to be pursuing an open-backed bus.”

Meanwhile, The London Paper reports that passengers are unhappy with the single deck buses recently used as temporary replacement for the supposedly despised bendy bus. Complaints range from lack of seating, which in the rush hour is proving unbearable for many. Coupled with the news that the permanent replacement will cost at least £250,000 (considerably more than the bendy bus), it is hardly surprising that passengers are likely to be grumbling.

An ever-diminshing budget and upset passengers? I don’t recall seeing this in Mayor Johnson’s manifesto – mind you, neither did he. But a little foresight would have certainly helped!



  1. Not entirely related, but I wonder how much London Overground is costing ?

  2. As far as I'm aware, it's around £1.4bn.

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