Manchester's Problem of Replacing Old Buses
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("IF the Manchester Corporation bus %a/fleet of 971 vehicles 40 per cent. are more than eight years old and have been fully written off. These interesting facts were mentioned. last week, in a report by the passenger transport committee to the city council.
The committee recommended that tenders should be invited, so soon aa it becomes practicable, for 333 buses (as seplacernents).. at..ara estimated cost of £882,450, and for 41 new trolleybuees (four-wheelers and six-wheelers) at an estimated cost of 127.000.
It is proposed that Crossley Motors, Ltd., should complete the order for 118 buses plaeed. at the outbreak of war; there are 71 vehicles required., to complete the order. The transport committee suggests that the contract should be on the basis of original cost„ plus increase in the cost of materials and labour at the time of manufacture.
" During the war years," adds the report, -" improvements have been made in the engine and chassis. The new power unit will he fighter and more efficient, and it may be possible to obtain n.. certain number of vehicles fitted with a new device which eliminates the gearbox."
Of the buses now in use by the corporation three are 16 years old; 50 15 years old; 42 14 years old; 37 13 years .old; 27 12 years old; 69 11 years old; 89 10 years old; 16 nine years old —making a total of 333. Vehicles under eight years old number 638.
Since 1941 the loan debt on the bus undertaking has been reduced from £1,054,800 to £325,600. II the immediate post-war period, if that should be in 1945, there will( require to be spent in this country on the renewal of motorbuses over £43,000,000. This expenditure will have to he spread over several years owing to limited manufacturing facilities.