Public invited to vote for colour of new bus fleet

Buses painted in the proposed red and green for the fleet seen here at the Joo Koon Integrated Transport Hub.
Buses painted in the proposed red and green for the fleet seen here at the Joo Koon Integrated Transport Hub.ST PHOTO: ONG WEE JIN

Bright red or lush green. Commuters will get to vote for the colour of the new buses used under the Government contracting model.

The chosen colour will make its debut on buses to be used by Anglo-Australian company Tower Transit, which will start operations in the western part of the island from the second quarter of this year.

The two colour choices were unveiled yesterday by Senior Minister of State for Transport Ng Chee Meng during a visit to the Joo Koon Integrated Transport Hub.

Mr Ng said: "The design team thought these were representative colours - red symbolising our country; green, the lush greenery. Let's see how Singapore votes."

As the entire industry moves towards a contracting model, all buses will be eventually owned by the Government and the common livery will create a "distinctive identity", the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said.

To date, two packages of bus routes have been tendered out and awarded: One to Tower Transit and the other to British firm Go-Ahead. The tender for a third package is expected to be called later this year.

The plan is to progressively carve up all bus services in Singapore into 12 packages, to be run by three to five operators after 2022.

All public buses will also bear a logo with the words "SG Bus" and the slogan "Moving Ahead Together".

The LTA said it will provide Tower Transit with about 50 new buses that will feature the new colour, and another 300 buses bought earlier under the Bus Service Enhancement Programme.

The 300 buses are currently painted in the colours of incumbents SBS Transit and SMRT, and the LTA said it is reviewing the possibility of repainting them, but only if it is cost-effective to do so.

While public buses will all have the same colour, operators will be able to paint their logos on the vehicles. Bus captains will wear their respective company uniforms.

Civil servant Priya Sree, 22, has already made up her mind on the choice of colour: "Red is representative of the Singapore flag. The green looks a bit odd and is not so natural."

But Madam Julia Lee, 63, a part- time cleaner, said: "The green is more visually striking. For the elderly, it will be easier to spot at night."

The public can cast their votes at, or at selected MRT stations and bus interchanges. Voting for the new bus livery started yesterday and will end on Feb 5.

To help commuters visualise the new colour schemes, 10 red and 10 green buses will be deployed on the roads during the voting phase.

The results will be announced in the first quarter of this year.

Fifty participants who take part in the poll will each win a $50 shopping voucher in a lucky draw.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 09, 2016, with the headline 'Public invited to vote for colour of new bus fleet'. Print Edition | Subscribe