Concerns over Aberdeen bus stop lead to talks on changing location

Bus stop inside RGU Campus, which might be moved out onto Garthdee Road. Picture by KATH FLANNERY

Talks are under way to reposition a bus stop further away from a university, to better suit vulnerable travellers.

Garthdee Community Council, Robert Gordon University (RGU) and bus firm First are in discussions to move the stop away from the RGU grounds to the exit on Garthdee Road.

The community council has raised concerns that the needs of “fit, young and able students” had been put before the needs of residents in Garthdee.

Garthdee Community Council chairman, Paul O’Connor, said: “This issue goes back a few years and we have asked First Bus and the council to consider putting the stop on Garthdee Road.

“First Bus is concerned because of the popularity of the stop, but we have maintained that the needs of residents should take precedence over fit, young and able students who will use the bus irrespective of whether they need to walk 150 yards to Garthdee Road from the university buildings.”

Mr O’Connor said that local people in Garthdee found it “intimidating, especially during dark nights” to get off the bus inside the campus then walk up to Garthdee Road.

He added: “If they miss that stop it adds a few hundred yards of additional walking for local residents – it is the most vulnerable who are affected.”

The community council hopes it can reach a compromise with both First Aberdeen and RGU.

A spokesman for First said: “RGU definitely wants to work with us and we received feedback that there are also disabled people and older people who are students who would have to walk up and down – so it’s both ways.

“We’re hoping to meet with the council and RGU to try to get the bus stop put forward from the top of the hill.”

A meeting between councillors, roads officers, First Aberdeen and the community council is in the works to reach a compromise that would work for all parties.

An RGU spokeswoman said: “We would like to reiterate the importance of our community engagement.

“We have been involved in discussions around this and will support a consensus.”