FOI request detail

Freedom of Information request - Entry Figures for All Bus Stops in London

Request ID: FOI-2655-2223
Date published: 31 January 2023

You asked

Dear Transport for London, Please accept this as a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I am writing a research paper on the effects of the ULEZ in London on public transportation. In order to complete my research I require entry figures for all bus stops in London.

We answered

TfL Ref: 2655-2223

Thank you for your request received by Transport for London (TfL) on 19 January 2023 asking for information about entry figures for all bus stops in London to assist with your research paper on the effects of ULEZ in London   .

Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act and our information access policy.  I can confirm that we hold some of the information you require. You asked for:

entry figures for all bus stops in London

Attached is a Weekday Passenger Data spreadsheet for the month of June 2022, providing the number of boarders at each bus stop in the capital, which is the most recent and comprehensive snapshot of data we hold in this regard.

Please also note the following factors to consider with the dataset provided:
  • Some stops are only used at specific times of the day or week, or only during special events such as for concerts, or rail replacement services. These may be missed from a snapshot dataset, as this is dependent on the date range that is used.
  • There are also some technical issues which have affected the extraction of data, for example the zero boarder figures at Abbey Wood Station.
  • Data shown in rows 19717 to 19720, represent bus stops that are used only at the first stop of their respective routes at Golders Green and Liverpool Street stations. The dataset system we use makes sure that boarding only stops do not show any alighters that have disembarked, and vice versa
  • Every route has its own scaling factor for each hour of the day it operates, so stops that only have demand some of the time will still get included. Furthermore, if there was one person boarding at a bus stop on a Friday, for example, and our data extraction covers a weekday average of Monday to Friday, then the final boarding figure will be a fraction less than one, but greater than zero because we have divided by the total number of weekdays to get an average weekday figure.
  • The attached passenger data for June 2022, shows that there were 117 stops that have zero boarders. Of these, 77 were Hail and Ride stops; unfortunately entry figures are not accurately captured on the iBus ticket machines for Hail & Ride, given that passengers can board and disembark anywhere along these parts of the journey. Demand is instead allocated to the next fixed bus stop along the route.
  • Bus stops at Mortlake Station and Threadneedle Street are served only by very low frequency routes. Mortlake Station is served by bus number 969, which only operates on Tuesdays and Fridays, whilst Night Bus service N242 serves Threadneedle Street.

Given that we manage a bus fleet of around 9,300 vehicles, operating across 675 routes, which undergo various changes throughout the year such as temporary bus stop closures, diversions, curtailments, or other operational reasons, our software systems can sometimes encounter difficulties in updating and incorporating the impact of these changes as they occur, especially when at short notice, which can lead to some data failures in places. For example, Abbey Wood Station is shown as having zero boarders due to technical errors involved with extracting such considerable volumes of data from across the London Buses network, as well as the various software systems involved in formulating this data.

If this is not the information you are looking for, or if you are unable to access it for any reason, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal as well as information on copyright and what to do if you would like to re-use any of the information we have disclosed.

Yours sincerely

Jasmine Howard
FOI Case Officer
FOI Case Management Team
General Counsel
Transport for London


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