Tower Transit Singapore awarded $1b deal to operate Bulim, Sembawang-Yishun bus packages

·Editorial Team
·2-min read
Tower Transit awarded the Bulim and Sembawang-Yishun bus packages. (ILLUSTRATION: LTA)
Tower Transit awarded the Bulim and Sembawang-Yishun bus packages. (ILLUSTRATION: LTA)

SINGAPORE — The Land Transport Authority (LTA) has awarded a contract totalling $1.03 billion for the Bulim and Sembawang-Yishun bus packages to Tower Transit Singapore (TTS).

The five-year contract will start progressively from the second quarter of 2021. If TTS were to perform well over the period, the LTA has the option to extend the contract term by another two years thereafter.

TTS currently operates the Bulim package, consisting of 29 bus services running from Bulim Depot. It will continue to manage Bukit Batok and Jurong East bus interchanges.

The Sembawang-Yishun package, which is currently operated by SMRT Buses, consists of 27 bus services. These services will operate from the new Mandai Depot, which will be handed over to TTS by next month. TTS will also manage Sembawang and Yishun bus interchanges.

The tender for the two bus packages was called on 29 November 2019 and bus operators had the option to bid for either bus package or for both packages.

Affected SMRT employees of the Sembawang–Yishun bus package must be offered a job by the incoming operator, at employment terms that are not worse off than before the transition.

Since the move to the bus contracting model, Singapore’s bus industry has benefited from the entry of two new operators, TTS and Go-Ahead Singapore, the LTA said. “This has created more job opportunities for bus workers and levelled up the industry, where the bus workforce now enjoys better working conditions as well as employment terms and conditions.”

Meanwhile, National Transport Workers’ Union (NTWU) Executive Secretary and Radin Mas MP Melvin Yong said NTWU will work closely with SMRT and TTS to ensure that all affected workers will have a smooth transition.

“The Union is committed to work with the different public transport operators to take care of our bus workers and create a safe working environment for them.”

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