Centro and Arriva’s Partnership Plus deal

West Midlands transport authority (Centro) and Arriva Midlands has signed a £9m partnership deal that will bring about new buses, Swift electronic ticketing and refurbishments to Dudley bus station. The agreement will see the operator’s premium Sapphire brand buses rolled out and pledge 22 initiatives between 2014 and 2016 with the aim of making bus travel more attractive, improving customer satisfaction and growing passenger numbers. Key features of the agreement include making all the operator’s ticket offers available on the Swift smartcard and a minimum of 20 new buses into the fleet, of which 18 will be Sapphire branded. The company is to work with Centro to improve links to i54 near Wolverhampton. It will also see new shelters and enhanced information provision in Wolverhampton city centre. New buses will operate on the 110 route from Birmingham to Tamworth and the 1 and 2 routes between Walsall and Cannock. As well as free wi-fi, the vehicles are to feature E-leather seats and charging points.

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