Route U is the University bus for everyone, operating between Madingley Road Park & Ride and Addenbrooke’s Hospital via Cambridge Railway Station. It is branded as Universal and is the replacement for the Uni4 bus service.
It is the first time a frequent service has connected West Cambridge with Cambridge Railway Station. There are other improvements including more journeys on weekdays and buses on Saturdays. The service is subsidised by the University of Cambridge with assistance from the North West Cambridge Development.
Jess Cunningham, Travel Plan Manager for the University of Cambridge said: “The Universal service includes simpler fares, a stop at the railway station and use of The Busway. This will make a much more reliable and accessible service which the University in partnership with Whippet Coaches will be monitoring. Connecting the places that people want and need to get to is a vitally important part of our travel planning, not just for University staff but also the wider Cambridge community.”
A series of improvements will be made to the service over a period of time. These include:
- From 23 July 2016, the bus route will go via Cambridge Railway Station as well as the city centre
- The service will operate approximately every 15-minutes between 07:00 and 19:30 on Mondays to Fridays. A 20-minute service will operate between Madingley Road Park & Ride and Cambridge Railway Station on Saturdays
- From 5 December 2016, the bus will travel from Cambridge Railway Station to Cambridge Biomedical Campus via the Cambridgeshire Guided Busway, using brand new high-specification buses. A later bus will operate from Cambridge Railway Station on Saturdays. Click here for more details
- From early 2017, the bus will enter the North West Cambridge Development and its local centre called Eddington
Heather Topel, Acting Project Director for the West and North West Cambridge Developments said: “With ambitions for a long-lasting and sustainable place on the new development, creating connectivity to local destinations and to strategic employment and public transport hubs is important. The eagerly awaited connection from this part of Cambridge to the railway station is a benefit for the local community and the service will be running in advance of the arrival the residents of the North West Cambridge Development.”
The service will have a £2 flat fare for all journeys and University card holders will pay £1 for a single journey. Universal will run completely within the City & Bar Hill ticket zone, so unlimited travel will be just £3 a day, £10 a week. There are also plans to introduce mobile phone ticketing and this will enable customers to purchase other great-value tickets.
You can follow the new service on Twitter @busuniversal where we also post important information about route U.