Mayor signals the end of London’s Boris Bus in new mission to clean-up the capital’s air

Sadiq Khan has signaled the end of the road for London’s “Boris Bus” in a new mission to clean-up the capital’s air.

The bespoke red double deckers ordered by previous mayor Boris Johnson at a cost of more than £350m have been in service less than 15 years.

But Khan, re-elected last week for a historic third term, has pledged to make London’s bus-fleet ‘zero emission’ by 2030.

The aim is to have London’s 8,600 buses powered by batteries or hydrogen.

"By 2030, all the buses in London will be zero emission," Sadiq Khan said.

"Some may need to be retro-fitted but I think all will be new buses by 2030.

"It means any bus that is not zero emission will be off our streets by 2030," he explained.

The “Boris Bus” - officially the New Bus For London, or NB4L - was commissioned by Johnson as a replacement for the iconic Routemaster.

Boris Johnson in what was officially called the New Bus For London Credit: ITV News

It was designed by award-winning Thomas Heatherwick who was also responsible for the London 2012 Olympic cauldron.

The first batch of a 1,000 new buses arrived in London from a Northern Ireland factory in 2012.

Johnson described it as: “The cleanest, greenest bus on the streets of London by miles” .

But one Labour critic called it: Boris’s white elephant” and the buses soon ran into trouble after passengers complained of stifling heat during a London summer.

They had to be retrofitted with opening windows. The conductors were later withdrawn to save money.

The original Routemaster double decker, with its open platform and conductor, was introduced by London Transport in 1954.

But the buses were retired in 2005 after more than 50 years when London’s first mayor, Ken Livingstone, ordered a fleet of bendy buses.

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