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MiniPlus Article
February 25 2019
By Tim Deakin

Tim is Editor of routeone and has worked in both the coach and bus and haulage industries.

Could DRT minibuses capture subsidised routes?

Merseytravel suggests DRT such as ArrivaClick could take over services

The possibility of demand-responsive transport (DRT) minibus services taking over “some elements” of the supported conventional network has been raised in front of the Transport Select Committee.

Matthew Goggins, Head of Bus at Merseytravel, made the suggestion when the Committee visited Liverpool on 14 January as part of its investigation into the health of the bus market. He referred to ArrivaClick, which began operations in the city in August 2019.

Mr Goggins says that while Merseytravel is not certain about what role DRT will play in the public transport mix of the future, it may be able to help some passengers who rely on the authority’s existing subsidised bus services.

“We have some views around what [DRT] may do in terms of helping people who find the traditional bus network more difficult to access, because it potentially goes to their homes.

“Some of the elements of the supported network that are not delivered in the most efficient way at the moment possibly could be done differently through a DRT solution. That may be where the commerciality of a service like ArrivaClick or another might come from - combining commercial fare-paying patronage with some other kinds of transport needs in a more efficient way.”

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