One of the most iconic images of London is the red route master bus – which is a design classic in its own right. Despite the routemasters not having been in use on the capitals roads for years it is still a very strong image – and the corgi models still sell to visitors by the truck load.
When Boris Johnson took over as mayor of London one of his promises was to ‘bring back’ the routemaster style of rear access bus. Londoners would again be able to jump on and off the rear of their red buses. A design competition was held and a design agreed upon – and now the finished article has arrived on the Transport for London fleet – and really smart it looks as well.
This is not an easy thing to pull off in design terms – New York has recently agreed to a new design for its classic yellow cabs – and the replacement is basically a van, nothing like the well-known large ‘sedan’ that has previously been used. Much more practical, but a loss of an iconic image for the city?
Whatever your view of Boris and what he has done for the capital, this is a great job – an icon has returned in an updated form! I for one can’t wait to go on one.