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Old December 19th 08, 01:20 PM posted to uk.transport.london
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Surprised no-one's posted this story:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/7790082.stm (complete with
pics)

Aston Martin designs Routemaster

The Aston Martin-Foster design has solar panels

Sports car manufacturer Aston Martin is joint winner of a competition to
design a new Routemaster bus for London.

The Warwickshire-based firm's winning entry was a team effort with
leading architects Foster and Partners.

They share the £25,000 first prize with bus, coach and truck design firm
Capoco Design, based in Wiltshire.

A Transport for London spokesman said the first of the greener and more
accessible, hop-on hop-off, double-deckers could be in service by 2011.

The original Routemasters were phased out from regular service by the
end of 2005 as they were inaccessible to wheelchairs or pushchairs.

Tendering process

The competition, in which children were also invited to take part,
attracted about 700 entries.

The winning designs will now be passed on to bus manufacturers,
following a competitive tendering process, to develop into a final
proposed design.

The Aston Martin-Foster bus design envisages a highly-manoeuvrable,
zero-emissions vehicle, with solar panels built into a glass roof, full
accessibility, warm lighting and wooden floors.

The Capoco design combines what the company describes as "the best of
the old with the best of the new".

The Capoco Design retains the Routemaster-style front engine

It has a low flat floor to allow easy access and will be low emission,
but will also retain the Routemaster-style front engine and open rear
platform.

The youngest winners were nine-year-olds Thomas Staricoff, from
Brighton, and Olivia Carrier, from north-west London, who received £200
worth of bicycle vouchers for their drawings of what a new bus should
look like.

London Mayor Boris Johnson said: "We have had a phenomenal response,
with ideas submitted from around the globe, and we now have, in our
joint winners, two stunning designs that allow us to go forward and
produce a truly iconic bus fit for 21st Century London."

But Labour's transport spokesperson on the London Assembly, Val
Shawcross, said: "The design competition may have been fun and the
winning designs are extremely impressive, but this is not a serious way
to make policy and not a worthwhile use of public money.

"I have yet to hear one convincing argument for why London needs a new
double-decker bus and until Boris comes up with some, Londoners will see
this as little more than a vanity project."



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Old December 19th 08, 01:55 PM posted to uk.transport.london
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Recliner wrote:
Surprised no-one's posted this story:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/7790082.stm (complete with
pics)

Aston Martin designs Routemaster

....

"I have yet to hear one convincing argument for why London needs a new
double-decker bus and until Boris comes up with some, Londoners will see
this as little more than a vanity project."


Possibly because it's daft? Of all the pointless things to do, this has
to take something of the biscuit. I've talked to the father of one of
the winners, who's a bus enthusiast, and a friend of mine's talked to
one of the others and neither of them particularly think it's a great
way to go about designing a bus, but it doesn't do your profile any harm
competing. I am truly scared as to how expensive bus travel's going to
be in London in five years time with this kind of profligate idiocy
going on. Leather seats, solar panels and a conductor?

Tom
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Old December 19th 08, 02:16 PM posted to uk.transport.london
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On Fri, 19 Dec 2008 13:55:57 +0000, Tom Barry
wrote:

Leather seats, solar panels and a conductor?


Leather seats are becoming increasingly common in buses, particularly
those sold as a premium service, because they both "look good" and
they are relatively cheap to maintain. (That's why Ryanair uses them
- just a quick wipe-down is needed to clean them).

But I think overall some of the runners-up seem more sensible.

Neil

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Old December 19th 08, 02:36 PM posted to uk.transport.london
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Neil Williams wrote:
On Fri, 19 Dec 2008 13:55:57 +0000, Tom Barry
wrote:

Leather seats, solar panels and a conductor?


Leather seats are becoming increasingly common in buses, particularly
those sold as a premium service, because they both "look good" and
they are relatively cheap to maintain. (That's why Ryanair uses them
- just a quick wipe-down is needed to clean them).

But I think overall some of the runners-up seem more sensible.


I hope by runners-up you don't mean Ken!


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Old December 19th 08, 02:59 PM posted to uk.transport.london
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On Fri, 19 Dec 2008 14:36:36 -0000, "John Rowland"
wrote:

I hope by runners-up you don't mean Ken!




Neil

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Old December 19th 08, 05:23 PM posted to uk.transport.london
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Recliner wrote:

"I have yet to hear one convincing argument for why London needs a new
double-decker bus


She can come on a Ken-dy Bus journey with me and convince me that that bus
is better than what we had before on the route.

and until Boris comes up with some, Londoners will see this as little more
than a vanity project."


No Londoners see this as one of the things they voted for. Again she can
come with me on a bus journey in the summer when it's stuck in traffic just
15m from the bus stop with a driver who won't let us out. Then she can tell
me that the Routemaster is a bad thing.


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Old December 19th 08, 05:25 PM posted to uk.transport.london
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On 19 Dec, 13:20, "Recliner" wrote:
Surprised no-one's posted this story:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/7790082.stm
(complete with pics)

Aston Martin designs Routemaster

The Aston Martin-Foster design has solar panels

Sports car manufacturer Aston Martin is joint winner of a competition to
design a new Routemaster bus for London.

The Warwickshire-based firm's winning entry was a team effort with
leading architects Foster and Partners.

They share the £25,000 first prize with bus, coach and truck design firm
Capoco Design, based in Wiltshire.

A Transport for London spokesman said the first of the greener and more
accessible, hop-on hop-off, double-deckers could be in service by 2011.

(snip)


Two things to note. First off, Capoco Design were the firm that were
behind the Autocar story on a new Routemaster back in December 2007 -
basically Autocar commissioned them to come up with a paper-prototype
for a new bus. I started a thread about it back then:
http://groups.google.co.uk/group/uk....fab9ab4234e16/

An associate editor at Autocar, Hilton Holloway, who was behind this
because he wanted "to prove to Bozza that it could – and should – be
done" - Boris was of course only the prospective Mayoral candidate at
the time.

That quote comes from Dave Hill's blog he
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/davehil...oris-transport

Now I suppose one can take two views on the apparent willingness of
Boris to formulate a policy that is arguably at least partially
influenced (though of course of that we cannot be sure) by a magazine
article that was produced with him specifically in mind - it could be
considered reckless or it could be considered open-minded.

There's another possible angle to all this as well of course - perhaps
the Autocar article, which got lots of favourable coverage in the
mainstream media at the time (and thus helped to associate Boris with
notions of a new Routemaster), was concocted by journalists who were
sympathetic to Boris, possibly with the loose collaboration of people
within Boris' campaign circle, or at least through the wider public
school/ Oxbridge old boy network.

Autocar is published by the somewhat old school Haymarket Group, a
private company founded by the former Conservative MP and Minister
Michael Heseltine who is the group's chairman (his son is the deputy
chairman) and still holds a large minority stake in the business. I'm
sure I read or heard somewhere that Boris was actually a friend or at
least quite good acquaintance of someone senior at Autocar magazine
(e.g. Chas Hallett, the overall editor, or this associate editor
Hilton Holloway), but I cannot find anything to support that at the
moment so perhaps that's not right.

Anyway my point is merely that there are a bunch of people here whose
views are perhaps broadly in confluence with one another, and who may
well move in similar circles, who may have acted in ways that were
helpful to Boris, whether with or without his blessing. I'm not
entirely sure I rate this as a good way of developing important
policy.

Do note the TfL spokesman's careful qualifier and lack of any firm
commitment in this sentence too...
"A Transport for London spokesman said the first [...] double-deckers
could be in service by 2011."

Great word, could.
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Old December 19th 08, 06:23 PM posted to uk.transport.london
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On 19 Dec, 14:16, (Neil Williams)
wrote:
Leather seats are becoming increasingly common in buses, particularly
those sold as a premium service, because they both "look good" and
they are relatively cheap to maintain. *(That's why Ryanair uses them
- just a quick wipe-down is needed to clean them).


There's at least one type of London bus I've been on that has them.
Scanias on the 148 maybe?

U
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Old December 19th 08, 07:23 PM posted to uk.transport.london
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On 19 Dec, 18:23, Mr Thant
wrote:

On 19 Dec, 14:16, (Neil Williams)
wrote:

Leather seats are becoming increasingly common in buses, particularly
those sold as a premium service, because they both "look good" and
they are relatively cheap to maintain. *(That's why Ryanair uses them
- just a quick wipe-down is needed to clean them).


There's at least one type of London bus I've been on that has them.
Scanias on the 148 maybe?


Yes, but only on a few of them. I also doubt that it's real leather.
Not sure about the whole hard wearing aspect when it comes to buses -
I recall seeing a few scratched seat covers and also I think a
graffiti tag or two - the leather presents a new easy to write on
surface on which to scribble (not that fabric covers are immune from
this but they require more effort on the part of the scribbler).

I'm dubious about leather (or leather-esque) seats in hot weather - I
imagine they might get sticky especially on a hot bus in London town.
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Old December 19th 08, 10:35 PM posted to uk.transport.london
MIG MIG is offline
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Default Aston-Martin Boris bus

On Dec 19, 5:25*pm, Mizter T wrote:
On 19 Dec, 13:20, "Recliner" wrote:





Surprised no-one's posted this story:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/7790082.stm
(complete with pics)


Aston Martin designs Routemaster


The Aston Martin-Foster design has solar panels


Sports car manufacturer Aston Martin is joint winner of a competition to
design a new Routemaster bus for London.


The Warwickshire-based firm's winning entry was a team effort with
leading architects Foster and Partners.


They share the £25,000 first prize with bus, coach and truck design firm
Capoco Design, based in Wiltshire.


A Transport for London spokesman said the first of the greener and more
accessible, hop-on hop-off, double-deckers could be in service by 2011.


(snip)


Two things to note. First off, Capoco Design were the firm that were
behind the Autocar story on a new Routemaster back in December 2007 -
basically Autocar commissioned them to come up with a paper-prototype
for a new bus. I started a thread about it back then:http://groups.google..co.uk/group/uk...owse_frm/threa...

An associate editor at Autocar, Hilton Holloway, who was behind this
because he wanted "to prove to Bozza that it could – and should – be
done" - Boris was of course only the prospective Mayoral candidate at
the time.

That quote comes from Dave Hill's blog hehttp://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/davehil...oris-transport

Now I suppose one can take two views on the apparent willingness of
Boris to formulate a policy that is arguably at least partially
influenced (though of course of that we cannot be sure) by a magazine
article that was produced with him specifically in mind - it could be
considered reckless or it could be considered open-minded.

There's another possible angle to all this as well of course - perhaps
the Autocar article, which got lots of favourable coverage in the
mainstream media at the time (and thus helped to associate Boris with
notions of a new Routemaster), was concocted by journalists who were
sympathetic to Boris, possibly with the loose collaboration of people
within Boris' campaign circle, or at least through the wider public
school/ Oxbridge old boy network.

Autocar is published by the somewhat old school Haymarket Group, a
private company founded by the former Conservative MP and Minister
Michael Heseltine who is the group's chairman (his son is the deputy
chairman) and still holds a large minority stake in the business. I'm
sure I read or heard somewhere that Boris was actually a friend or at
least quite good acquaintance of someone senior at Autocar magazine
(e.g. Chas Hallett, the overall editor, or this associate editor
Hilton Holloway), but I cannot find anything to support that at the
moment so perhaps that's not right.

Anyway my point is merely that there are a bunch of people here whose
views are perhaps broadly in confluence with one another, and who may
well move in similar circles, who may have acted in ways that were
helpful to Boris, whether with or without his blessing. I'm not
entirely sure I rate this as a good way of developing important
policy.

Do note the TfL spokesman's careful qualifier and lack of any firm
commitment in this sentence too...
"A Transport for London spokesman said the first [...] double-deckers
could be in service by 2011."

Great word, could.



The whole business looks like confusion between "design" and "style".

I would have though that the design requirements for a new London bus
would be

1) allow people to get on through a convenient door rather than walk
past the driver

2) don't be so long as to block crossings and junctions (eg be double-
deck)

3) be reasonably accessible to the disabled

4) (if possible) allow people to get on a convenient locations


Instead of which, the criteria for winning seem to have been

1) put the engine in the position that it was put in 100 years ago so
that the bus looks old-fashioned for tourists

Not very impressive really.


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