TfL has announced a four-week consultation on plans to trial an on-demand bus service in Ealing has been launched.on
The new service follows the start of a similar year-long trial in Sutton in May.
TfL said customers travelling on the new buses will be able to book a seat in real-time using an app or over the phone.
The vehicles provide real-time journey information onboard and will not follow a fixed route, with users instead able to board a bus at flexible stops within a certain area. The buses will be fully accessible and green and will be available between 0600 and 0100, seven days a week.
The consultation is asking Londoners for their views of the service, and the area and destinations it will cover.
Ealing has been chosen for the second trial, which will last a year, because there are relatively high numbers of private vehicles in the borough. Figures show that 40% of residents use cars – be they private or for hire – to get to work in the area, and TfL said it believes the service could encourage people to switch to a more sustainable way of travelling.
Running from Hanger Lane in the east to Southall in the west, the on-demand bus would provide an alternative that is tailored to the needs of individual passengers. TfL said it will intend to give people direct routes that are difficult to serve with existing public transport, while complementing the bus network in the area.
The trial will also look to encourage Ealing residents to use public transport for the whole of their journey, linking locals with the proposed launch area’s 29 bus routes and 10 Tube and rail stations.
TfL said it will use the lessons learnt from the two trials and different operating environments in Sutton and Ealing to understand the benefits and viability of introducing an on-demand service in the long term.