Manufacturers are coming up with new bus designs all the time, but due to their generic and functional nature they rarely stand out.
Thankfully the recent Design A New Bus For London competition run by TfL (Transport for London) and the Mayor Boris Johnson produced a whole host of innovative and good looking designs the are a fresh take on the Double decker, with a big helping of inspiration from the classic Routemaster design.
Our favourite, and joint winner of the competition was this one, developed in a joint venture between the archetypal British sports car manufacturer Aston Martin, and leading architects Foster + Partners.
It was designed as a zero emissions vehicle using electric motors inside each wheel for propulsion. Whilst the styling has a few neat retro touches it is especially modern looking from the rear, and has a large double side door for easy central access, and also reintroduces the rear open access platform that made the original Routemaster bus so convenient.
The top deck of the bus has a glazed roof which incorporates solar panels to help power the buses ancillary systems. On winning the competition, Lord Foster said:
“I am delighted that we have won joint first prize with the Aston Martin/Foster + Partners design. This project has really captured my imagination. London’s buses are so much a part of the essence of this city – functionally, symbolically and geographically… Our design seeks to combine contemporary innovation with timelessness. Like the original Routemaster – which was ahead of its time and consequently endured – a new bus for London should establish a whole new travel experience that espouses 21st century aspirations, while celebrating the memory and the experience of the original.”
To see some of the other great designs that were entered into the competition in full detail, you can visit the TfL website by following this link: TfL Design A New Bus For London Competition.