A BRAND new fleet of 50 buses are set to hit the road in Sandwell.
The buses have been unveiled by National Express West Midlands (NXWM) and Centro and include both double and singler-decker vehicles.
Cllr John McNicholas, chairman of Centro, the region’s public transport co-ordinator, unveiled the buses in Oldbury.
He said: “This investment is great news for Sandwell passengers.
“It is yet another example of the very real benefits that Centro’s partnership with NXWM is bringing to bus users across the region.
Peter Coates, managing director of NXWM, believes the new buses will entice more people to use buses.
He said: “The new midi buses will also help us to provide better bus services to housing estates.”
Cllr Darren Cooper, the leader of Sandwell Borough Council, welcomed the new investment into the borough.
He said: “It’s great news for Sandwell, especially as we’re getting the region’s biggest investment in new buses this year.
“It’s a major investment from National Express and Centro and really good news for public transport in Sandwell.”
The buses are British made and have been introduced as part of the Partnership Plus deal between Centro and NXWM to transform bus travel in the region.
They will have the latest environmentally-friendly engines for lower emissions and will have CCTV systems with pictures being displayed on screens in the vehicles.
Partnership Plus was signed in 2013 and will see a string of investments and innovations delivered by 2015 when it comes up for review.
It will include more than 300 new buses on the region’s roads, new bus shelters, and the introduction of the Sprint Rapid Transit system between Birmingham and Quinton.