LTA's Role in Public Bus Services

LTA as the central bus network planner to ensure an efficient, integrated and sustainable bus system that focuses on improving journey quality for commuters while balancing system costs. We also work with the Public Transport Operators (PTOs) to improve the waiting time for bus services so commuters can enjoy seamless transfers. As the regulator we work closely with the Public Transport Council to monitor the quality and affordability of bus services and together, we have established a Quality of Service (QoS) Standard that all public bus operators must abide by. Singapore has introduced the Bus Contracting Model and Bus Service Enhancement Programme to provide a robust and reliable bus system. 


WHAT IS THE BUS CONTRACTING MODEL (BCM)?

Single livery for newly awarded operators

Buses play a big part in our transport system and we’ve initiated a Bus Contracting Model (BCM) that will see Government owning all public buses and related infrastructure, while operators will be paid to run bus routes at higher service standards.  

In a nutshell

  • Government owns all bus assets
  • Operators bid to run services
  • Government keeps fare revenue
  • Operators paid to run services to specified performance standards

Two new operators—Tower Transit and Go-Ahead—entered the industry in 2016, operating two major packages of services.

With the Government having reached agreement with SBS Transit and SMRT Buses through negotiated contracts, the entire industry has completed its transition to the Bus Contracting Model on 1 September 2016.

With the BCM, commuters can expect

  • Public bus services to be more responsive to changes in ridership and commuter needs
  • Greater competition in the industry for better service (reliable bus services and shorter waiting time)

BCM implementation has taken place over several years and in various phases to ensure a smooth transition for the public and public transport operators. This minimises the risk of service disruption as new operators join the industry. 

The 14 bus packages under the BCM are operated by Tower Transit, Go-Ahead, SBS Transit and SMRT Buses. 

Bus Packages and Operators

Tendered Bus Packages: Each contract is for 5 years and can be extended for another 2 years on good performance.

Package Name

Operator

Start date of revenue service

Bulim Package

Tower Transit Singapore

29 May 2016

Loyang Package

Go-Ahead Singapore

4 September 2016

Seletar Package

Put out for tender in June 2016 (current operators are SBS Transit and SMRT Buses)

First half of 2018

Negotiated Bus Packages: Upon expiry of these negotiated contracts, more bus services will be gradually tendered out, in phases over several years, in order to minimise inconvenience to the public.

No of Packages

Operator

Contract Expiry Date

After Expiry

8

SBS Transit

2-10 years later

Bus packages will be tendered out progressively

3

SMRT Buses

4-7 years later


BESP Banner

BUS SERVICES ENHANCEMENT PROGRAMME (BSEP)

Bringing You More Buses, Better Rides

We are putting more buses on the road to help you get around. Under our Bus Service Enhancement Programme (BSEP), which started in 2012, 93% (510) of the first 550 buses were on the road; all 550 will be on the road by end 2014. We'll see 1,000 Government-funded buses on the road by 2017 to enhance connectivity and improve bus service levels. The BSRF trial was introduced in February 2014, and ended in August 2016 prior to the commencement of BCM. For more details on the BSRF Trial, click here.

Read more about BSEP
Press Release: Less Crowding, Shorter Peak Hour Waiting Times - Higher Capacity and Better Connectivity Island-Wide
See overview of BSEP enhancements to existing bus services and new bus services
Full Results of the BSRF Trial 4th Assessment Period (December 2015 to August 2016)


City Direct Bus Services

To give you more options to get into town, we have started a City Direct Bus Service scheme with private operators. You will find that the travel time on a City Direct bus is comparable to taking the bus/LRT to the train station and transferring to the MRT.

From 2014, there will be 10 such services in Ang Mo Kio, Bedok, Bukit Batok, Eunos, Hougang, Jurong East, Sembawang, Sengkang and West Coast. These 10 new services will supplement four similar services by public transport operators that were rolled out between December 2012 and June 2013. Those four services have already started taking residents in Tampines West, Yishun, Choa Chu Kang and Woodlands into the Central Business District. The first service that runs from Jurong West to the city started operating in September 2013.

Six new City Direct bus services from the heartlands to the Central Business District (CBD) will begin operations from January 2014. Three of these services will be implemented in January 2014, followed by another three in February 2014. 

List of new basic and City Direct bus services introduced under the BSEP
Press Release: Six new City Direct bus services starting from January 2014
Press Release: Three more new City Direct bus services stating February 2014


GREATER PRIORITY FOR BUSES ON THE ROADS

To ensure bus services provide smooth journeys for commuters, LTA has rolled out several initiatives to make buses a priority on roads:

LTA Role

  • Bus lanes have been extended from 120km to 150km since 2008.
  • All motorists must give way to buses at bus bays.
  • Signal priority will be given for buses approaching some major junctions by extending the green-time for them.
  • Bus average speeds have been increased from 16-19km/h to 20-25km/h.

Did you know

The aim is to have at least 85% of commuters complete their public transport journeys within 60 minutes by 2020.