The Welsh Government should manage bus stations in Wales as ‘national assets’, a watchdog has said.
Bus Users Cymru - which works with the Welsh government, local authorities and bus companies to drive up standards - has told a Welsh Assembly's enterprise and business committee that too many bus stations are ‘considered unimportant’ despite significant footfall.
In written evidence to the committee the group said: ‘Bus stations are not given the status they should have. Cardiff has closed its bus station without having a replacement open, Merthyr Tydfil bus station is not the best passenger experience and Port Talbot and Bridgend bus stations close in the evening. Swansea has a good bus station but it is poorly placed for integration with rail services.’
Newport bus station
Cardiff CC closed its central bus station in August to make way for BBC Wales’ new headquarters building, two and a half years before a replacement station is due to open nearby.
Bus Users Cymru says such situations might be avoided if bus stations came under the Welsh Government.
‘Bus stations, like railway stations, should become a “national asset” and be managed, via local authorities, by the Welsh Government,’ its evidence states.
It also warns that journey planning is difficult for some bus users because not all councils produce time timetable information. ‘Bus stations are closing their information offices to save money, so in some places there is complete lack of information.’