London Superloop express busway announced
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced plans for a network of limited-stop express bus routes that circle the entire capital. The routes are designed to connect outer London town centres, railway stations, hospitals and transport hubs, faster.
Entitled Superloop, it will provide quicker journey times, with the Mayor of London providing £6m funding as an initial catalyst to improvements to outer London orbital bus services. It is proposed to be introduced in stages with some routes that would become part of the Superloop now in operation, providing quick links across outer London. This includes the X140 connecting Heathrow and Harrow, and a more frequent route X26 connecting Heathrow and West Croydon. The next new part of the outer London bus network will be the route linking Harrow with North Finchley, subject to consultation.
Following that, views will be sought on future sections of the orbital network. These proposed future sections include a limited-stop express link between North Finchley and Walthamstow and between Walthamstow and the Royal Docks via Ilford. Links are also proposed between Bexleyheath, Bromley and Croydon. Some of the benefits of the proposed Superloop will be realised later this year, with the X26 doubling in frequency so that buses run every 15 minutes instead of every 30 minutes.
TfL data shows that the most recently introduced limited-stop express route, the X140, delivered a 10% to 15% increase in weekday demand and that frequencies at the busiest stops served by the 140 was increased. Surveys found that customers had increased satisfaction with their journey times and nearly four in five said they would use the X140 more often.
“These new routes will make it much easier for Londoners to get around the capital, and help build a better, greener London for everyone” – The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “When I made the tough decision to expand the ULEZ London-wide, one of my key commitments to Londoners was to improve transport links in outer London. Today I am delivering on that commitment as we announce the Superloop, the game-changing new network of express buses that will add over four million additional kilometres to our bus network in outer London, linking stations, town centres, hospitals and transport hubs. These new routes will make it much easier for Londoners to get around the capital, and help build a better, greener London for everyone.”
“For the first time we will be bringing a number of the capital’s town centres together with express orbital routes” – Alex Williams, Chief Customer and Strategy Officer at TfL
Alex Williams, Chief Customer and Strategy Officer at TfL, said: “The Superloop is the jewel in the crown in our plans to strengthen alternatives to the private car ahead of the ULEZ expanding London-wide and is a game changer for outer London. For the first time we will be bringing a number of the capital’s town centres together with express orbital routes. We know these kinds of services are hugely popular from what we have seen in the rise in the number of people using the X140 during the week.
“Part of making the bus network even more attractive is providing new routes and increasing frequencies where it is required – both of which we are doing with this new iconic service. The Superloop is on top of, and complements, a million additional bus kilometres committed by the Mayor in the capital’s outer ring and includes improvements from Sutton in the south to Brent Cross in the north, as well as transformational changes to London’s rail network outside the centre of the city.”
The Superloop will be designed to provide quicker journey times while still serving key hubs and interchanges with rail and local bus services. The Mayor’s Hopper fare would allow people who started their journeys within 60 minutes to transfer onto local bus services free of charge to complete their journeys where required.
The Superloop will comprise ten routes in total. Four of these are existing: X26 (Croydon to Heathrow Airport), X140 (Heathrow Airport to Harrow), 607 (Uxbridge to White City) and X68 (Russell Square to Croydon). The other five routes will all be consulted on separately between now and spring 2024.