From Monday June 28, Ritchies Coachlines will again be providing Metro services for Timaru.
Environment Canterbury acting director operations, Wayne Holton-Jeffreys, says that probably the only difference Timaru residents will notice is a change of colour for the buses.
“The replacement buses will not be the uniform green that people are used to seeing. Instead people will need to look out for Ritchies’ buses with the route number they want. The buses will all be painted white and will have identical Ritchies livery. They will also all be numbered, and have clearly identifiable Metro branding including roof pods.”
Ritchies took over the contract from the previous service provider who decided to terminate their contract prematurely with just 18 months to go.
“Ritchies has previous experience in running Timaru bus services and have always provided a great level of service. Environment Canterbury is confident that they will handle the transition smoothly and that bus-users will barely notice the change,” says Mr Holton-Jeffreys.
Mr Holton-Jeffreys says that passengers can expect the same high standards of service and will still be able to use their Metrocards as usual. Buses will display the same route numbers, follow the same routes and use the same timetables. They will also stop at all of the same stops.
This change does not affect the newly developed Timaru Metro Strategy. Environment Canterbury is still reviewing the opportunity of implementing a number of proposed improvements that came from that process and public consultation will go ahead as planned.
“Later in the year, we will be inviting feedback and suggestions from existing and potential bus users as part of our continuing drive for improvement,” says Mr Holton-Jeffreys.
For further information: Wayne Holton-Jeffreys, Acting Director Operations, 03 372 7234.