Delivering improvements along the local Aberdare bus corridors
The Council has provided an update on the ongoing programme of work to improve local bus stops along several key routes in the Aberdare area, using funding secured from Welsh Government.
Local Transport Fund allocations for 2023/24 were announced in September 2023, and the Council was successful in securing around £200,000 funding for bus stop enhancements under the Bus Priority Scheme. The work programme is being delivered in three phases, focusing on improving 106 bus stops in Aberdare and along local bus corridors in surrounding communities.
Phases one and two of the programme are now substantially complete. The works at each bus stop range from installing new raised bus boarding kerbs, bus shelters, road markings and signage where required. New bus stop flags will also be installed shortly. Other improvements are focusing on the immediate surroundings of the stops, to ensure they are accessible to all.
The above image shows three locations to receive new facilities under the ongoing programme – at Miners Row and Corner House (Merthyr Road) in Llwydcoed and at the Golden Post bus stop in Cwmbach.
Phase three works are now underway, and improvements will be delivered at the further locations during the remainder of 2023/24 (ending March 2024).
Councillor Andrew Morgan OBE, Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Investment, said: “In recent years, the Council has delivered significant investment through its Strategic Bus Corridor Improvement Scheme, to enhance accessibility to local bus services and improve the quality of facilities. Such investment was delivered on the route between Porth, Tonyrefail and Gilfach Goch in 2022/23, which followed a previous programme between Abercynon and Aberaman.
The Council has welcomed the 2023/24 Taxpayers funding allocation by Welsh Government for further bus stop improvements in and around Aberdare. This has been complemented by Council funding to provide a total investment of around £222,000. I’m pleased that good progress has been made since work started last June, with around two-thirds of the programme now delivered. The third and final phase is underway and on schedule for completion in March.
“The investment is aiming to increase the number of bus stops that comply with the Equalities Act, ensuring public transport is accessible to all. We’re also aiming to create more inviting facilities, including waiting areas, to encourage more people to catch the bus regularly as part of their daily journeys – to help reduce traffic congestion and improve the environment
In 2023, the Council introduced periods of cheaper bus travel for residents – capping all single journeys that start and end within Rhondda Cynon Taf to a £1 maximum fare. These ran for the six-week school summer holiday and the entire month of December. Similar future schemes are being considered, with further funding available from Taxpayers to the Council from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.