Be a pioneer - take a free journey on Metrobus
Buses will run every 20 minutes from 6am until 7pm, then every half an hour until 9pm on Mondays to Saturdays during the summer.
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A more comprehensive winter timetable is due to be introduced by the operator in September.
Some other bus routes are changing as a result of the introduction - and because the A4174 viaduct has reopened - so check your timetables before you travel.
Although Metrobus recently unveiled a grey, black and red double-decker in Bristol, it says the m3 route buses will be green. They will have USB charging points at every seat and free wi-fi. First has spent more than £1.5 million on the m3 route vehicles, which use lower-emission Euro VI technology.
Councillor Colin Hunt, lead member for planning, transport and strategic environment at South Gloucestershire Council, said: “This is good news for everyone who uses the roads – a reliable bus service, direct to the city centre, avoiding congestion hot spots, will encourage people out of their cars, reducing congestion further and helping to improve our air quality. As a regular bus user, I’m looking forward to faster journeys avoiding the congestion hot spots.”
Councillor Mhairi Threlfall, Bristol City Council’s cabinet member for transport and connectivity, said: “Metrobus has already provided many benefits, from an enhanced city centre to new walking and cycling infrastructure. And, crucially, it will provide a fast, reliable, direct route from the south of the City to the north, with the first route running from the centre to UWE and business centres at Emerald Park and the Bristol & Bath Science Park. I for one will use it and I hope many more people will join me to give it a try. The bus-only junction will also noticeably speed up the journey.”
First West of England managing director James Freeman said: “We are very excited about the launch of this new Metrobus service. Metrobus promises to revolutionise bus transport in Bristol and South Gloucestershire by offering a premium service, faster getting on and off, and speedier travel by virtue of the dedicated road infrastructure and off bus ticketing.”
The other two main Metrobus routes are the m1, which will link Hengrove Park in South Bristol to Cribbs Causeway, via Bedminster and the city centre, while the m2 will link the Long Ashton park and ride to the city centre and Temple Meads.
Both are behind schedule, as is the m3 link to Cribbs Causeway.
First will operate the m3 and m2, with Bristol Community Transport, HCT Group, operating the m1.