23 September 2008
Figures just released show that, for the 4 weeks ending on 24 August 2008, Jersey’s buses carried more passengers and generated more revenue than in any other period since Connex took over 6 years ago. On average, over 13,000 passengers were carried each day over this period, an increase of over 6% compared with last year. The Island Explorer routes, which serve the tourist attractions, showed a 27% increase in passenger numbers - nearly 11,000 additional rides when compared to the same period last year.
Connex is just coming to the end of its sixth year operating the network. The service provider has also operated the schools and summer services for the last 2 years.
The latest year on year figures for the main scheduled network indicate that passenger numbers have increased by 6.2% compared to Year 5 and fare income has risen by 7.4%, despite there being no overall increase in fare levels since 2004.
The Minister for Transport and Technical Services (TTS), Deputy Guy de Faye, said “I am absolutely delighted with these figures, which vindicates the close working relationship that the department has with Connex. We have not only provided a new bus station, but we’ve also been working with Connex to improve the bus service and this steady increase in passenger numbers helps reduce congestion. It additionally represents a real saving to all those car driving commuters who have switched to bus travel and no longer pay daily parking charges. Although the figures aren’t out yet, I expect them to show that Connex will reach my 3 million passengers a year target during the next few weeks, which will be a fantastic achievement.”
TTS has recently announced a 3 year extension on the Connex contract, which will now expire in 2012. Part of the negotiations included the scheduling of more commuter buses on the busy eastern and western corridor routes into St Helier to increase capacity. Some of these started on 7 July this year while an additional Route 1 commenced at the beginning of September when the school term began. The Minister continued “I am hoping that the increased services will encourage even more people to use the bus and leave their cars at home. “