Transport for London has decided to “discontinue purchases” of those curvy, funky-looking London buses we all like the look of, because they’re really expensive and absolutely not worth it.
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has been fiercely critical of the new Routemasters, writing in the Standard ahead of his election last year: “They are the most expensive buses in the world, with extra millions spent replacing the ludicrous windows that don’t open. Their batteries are too expensive to replace and their diesel engines cause too much pollution.”
At around £350,000 each, they’ve been costing around £50,000 more than standard London buses. Millions more was spent sorting out those windows that wouldn’t open, and the hop on, hop off service previous mayor Boris Johnson banged on so passionately about has also been abandoned.
All in all, a bit of a disaster.
“New capital investment will be reduced significantly as we discontinue purchases of New Routemaster buses,” said TfL. “We will carry on investing in the fleet however, by retro-fitting 3,000 vehicles with Euro VI standard emission technology by 2020.” [Guardian]