LTA calls for tender to invite private bus companies to operate five city bus services

SINGAPORE - The Land Transport Authority (LTA) on Monday called for a tender to invite private bus operators to submit their cost proposals to operate five bus services to and from the Central Business District (CBD) from the heartlands during peak hours.

Residents in Marsiling and Woodlands, Pasir Ris, Tampines East and Simei, Yew Tee and Yishun will have more options for their daily commute to and from the CBD during morning and evening peak periods, when the five new City Direct Services (CDS) start progressively from the second quarter of 2015, LTA said on Monday.

The tendering process will allow the most cost-efficient operator or operators to win the rights to operate the services. Successful operators will have to apply for bus service licences from the Public Transport Council (PTC), which regulates bus services, LTA added.

The two new CDS serving Marsiling and Woodlands and Yishun will operate three one-way trips on weekday mornings from the respective housing estates towards the CBD and two return trips from the CBD in the evenings.

The other three new CDS will operate two one-way trips on weekday mornings towards the CBD and two return trips from the CBD in the evenings. More trips may be added if demand for the services increases. The bus services will operate on weekday peak periods excluding public holidays. More details will be announced closer to the implementation dates, LTA said.

The five additional CDS will bring the total number of such services to 15. Currently, there are 10 CDS serving Jurong West, Ang Mo Kio, Bukit Batok and Hillview, Sengkang, West Coast, Sembawang, Jurong East, Eunos, Bedok and Hougang. The buses stop at selected bus stops and travel on the expressway.

The move is in line with the Ministry of Transport's announcement at the Committee of Supply 2013 to tap on the resources of private bus operators to run CDS to augment the resources of the public transport operators.

jalmsab@sph.com.sg