Monday 27th February 2012
The new Routemaster bus began operating in London. Originally referred to as the New Bus for London and colloquially as the Borisbus or Borismaster, it is a hybrid diesel-electric double-decker bus. Designed by Heatherwick Studio, it is manufactured by Wrightbus, and is notable for featuring a “hop-on hop-off” rear open platform similar to the original Routemaster bus design but updated to meet requirements for modern buses to be fully accessible.The design for the new double-decker bus features three doors and two staircases to allow accessible boarding. Unlike the original Routemaster, the new bus has a conventional full front end and a rear platform that can be closed when not needed, rather than the protruding, bonneted ‘half cab’ design and permanently open platform. The layout of the new bus allows it to be operated by one person at off-peak times. The cost of each bus will be £355,000 over the four year procurement period. The New Routemasters have come under sustained criticism for design faults such as overheating for passengers in summer and emitting more pollution than their predecessors.