York’s park-and-ride to be re-tendered?

City of York Council is to look again at tenders to operate its park-and-ride services.

With over 4m passenger journeys each year, the council was “confident” the tender would “attract a number of high profile bids” to continue offering the best possible deal.

In a statement it says: “Although there was strong interest in the contract, at this stage of the procurement process no responses meeting the council’s financial expectations against the specification tendered were received.”

Adds Cllr Ian Gillies, Executive Member for Transport and Planning: “We have already approached operators to establish what alterations to the specification might be required to enable them to bid again.

“We’re confident we will secure a new operator who will work with the authority to provide a service, which will work towards achieving its targets over the length of the contract.”

The council’s aims have not been revealed. The former Labour-controlled council is in no overall control.

The council has negotiated a six-month extension to the current contract with First York, whose contract expires at the end of January 2017.

York’s first park-and-ride service started in the late-1970s, operating from two free car parks just beyond the city walls, catering for peak demand for Christmas shopping. The first permanent park-and-ride site opened in 1990 when 159,690 passenger journeys were made. Over each of the next five years this rose to 734,150 (1995), 1.2m (2000), 2.3m (2005) to 4m today.