Several years in the making, the much-improved and extended hub features an array of pioneering, low-energy green technology and will sit as a benchmark for future transport facilities.
In a UK first, the Ellon Park and Ride features ultra-bright passenger information displays which were designed and installed by Journeo.
The three colour digital bus stop flags show live, ‘real-time’ travel information, with the latest LED technology ensuring that the signs are readable both in direct sunlight and at night.
As well as providing passengers with clear information, the displays are completely protected against the elements and have a life expectancy in excess of 10 years.
Six Papercast displays were installed by Pindar Creative just days before Storm Arwen hit leaving large swathes of north-east Scotland without power for some time.
The council’s choice of this ‘off-grid’ power in the form of long-life batteries will enable the screens to continue operating during future outages.
With industry-leading power efficiency, Papercast displays use no power at all to display an image and only a little power to change an image, making electronic paper one of the lowest power display technologies in the world.
Meanwhile, the three new low-profile enclosed bus shelters installed by Commutaports feature sedum vegetation roofing and solar-powered LED lighting. The system uses modern battery storage methods to charge the batteries in the most efficient way resulting in green energy that provides greater light output with lower power requirements.
Sedum planting can help reduce pollution by holding airborne contaminants or windblown particles and prevent them from being dispelled through water running from the roof. The durable shelters give excellent structural strength and high corrosion resistance, with the shelter being fully recyclable.
Cllr Iain Taylor, chair of Aberdeenshire Council’s Formartine Area Committee, said: “The green technology incorporated in the new Ellon Park and Ride is hugely-impressive and I congratulate both our services and contractors for designing and constructing this wonderful facility in what continue to be very challenging times.
“There is absolutely no doubt that through our close partnership working with Nestrans and Stagecoach, Aberdeenshire continues to lead the way in developing and promoting Park and Ride as an effective and affordable transport option enabling passengers to combine car, bus and rail journeys.”
Cllr John Crawley, chair of both the council’s Infrastructure Services Committee and Nestrans, added: “The site at Ellon has been a successful Park and Ride facility for many years, thanks to the effective partnership working between Aberdeenshire Council, Nestrans and Stagecoach.
“The extension to the site has been in the planning and construction phase for some time now and so it is good to see it open for users. Nestrans is pleased to have been able to support the funding of the project and I look forward to the continued success of this facility.”
Peter Knight, managing director at Stagecoach Bluebird, said: “It is fantastic to see these developments from Aberdeenshire Council at Ellon Park and Ride to make travelling by bus even easier. The facility in Ellon has been our most popular Park and Ride site in the north east of Scotland for almost 10 years and we look forward to welcoming even more passengers on board our frequent services to Aberdeen from the Park and Ride.”