Joint News Release by the Land Transport Authority (LTA), SBS Transit & SMRT - Bus Service Enhancement Programme (BSEP) 4th Year Report

News Releases 14 Oct 2016 bus contracting Bus Service Enhancement Programme (BSEP)

  • 820 of the 1,000 BSEP buses on road
  • 65 new bus services introduced
  • 60% of existing bus services with improved capacity or frequency
  • Crowding reduced by 85%
  • $3.5 to $4 billion in Government subsidies as part of bus contracting over next five years

1.  As of end September 2016, about 820 of the 1,000 buses under the Bus Service Enhancement Programme (BSEP) have been deployed into service. This has helped enhance about 60% of the existing 296 bus services. As a result, the number of crowded services has fallen by 85%[1]. In addition, 65 new routes have also been introduced to enhance connectivity. (More details on BSEP improvements can be found at Annex A)

2.  Of the new bus services introduced, 20 are City Direct Services (CDS) operated by private operators. The 20 CDS provide connectivity between the CBD and major housing estates which include Ang Mo Kio, Bedok, Bukit Batok / Hillview, Clementi / Dover, Eunos, Hougang, Jurong East, Jurong West, Marsiling / Woodlands, Pasir Ris, Punggol, Sembawang, Sengkang, Tampines / Simei, West Coast, Yew Tee and Yishun. Due to the popularity of the CDS, 18 additional trips have been added to nine services. For example, CDS 654 now operates with five trips during the morning peak period, an increase from two trips when the route was first launched. The average ridership per trip for all CDS is about 40 to 50 commuters. (More details on CDS can be found at Annex B)

3.  Eight supplementary bus services have been added during peak hours. They serve the residents of Bedok, Buangkok, Bukit Merah, Hougang, Jurong East, Punggol, Sembawang, Ubi and Whampoa. These supplementary services have resulted in shorter wait times and less crowded bus rides for commuters using feeder services to travel to and from nearby transport nodes and amenities. More trips have also been injected into these services since launched.

Upcoming New Bus Services

4.  In its fifth and final year, more improvements will be rolled out under the BSEP. A new Service 883 between Sembawang and Yishun will be introduced on 23 October 2016 to serve new housing developments in Canberra. In addition, CDS 671 in Sengkang and CDS 672 in Hougang will be launched on 17 October 2016 and 7 November 2016, respectively, bringing the total number of CDS to 22.

5.  More new bus services will also be implemented to further enhance connectivity in areas like Ang Mo Kio, Bedok, Hougang, Sengkang, Tampines, Toa Payoh, Tuas, Whampoa and Yishun. Details of these new services are being worked out and will be shared closer to the implementation dates.

Transition to Bus Contracting Model

6.  Through the $1.1 billion BSEP, the Government has invested significant resources to improve bus services. With the full transition to the new bus contracting model since September 2016, the Government will continue subsidising bus services by $3.5 to $4 billion in total in the next five years.

7.  These investments are expected to translate into higher service levels for commuters as all bus services will have scheduled headways of no more than 15 minutes during the morning and evening peak periods, with at least half of them having scheduled headways of no more than 10 minutes. Feeder services will run at intervals of six to eight minutes.

8.  Mr Chew Men Leong, LTA’s Chief Executive, said: “The improvements that have been made under the BSEP are encouraging and we look forward to continuing this upward trend as we work with all four PTOs to ensure commuters get to enjoy smoother, more frequent bus services under the bus contracting model.”

Annex A: BSEP Fourth Year Round-up Poster
Annex B: Overview of City Direct Services Poster


[1] Measured by crowded service days, which is the number of days for each bus service where the average loading over the heaviest one hour during either the morning or evening peak period is more than 85%.



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