Mumbai’s Iconic Double-Decker Buses Bow Out After 86 Years of Service

Mumbai: The iconic non-air-conditioned double-decker BEST buses in Mumbai will retire from service on Friday night after serving the city for 86 years.

The last five double-decker buses on specific routes in south Mumbai will make their final journeys into history. A handful of open-deck double-decker tourist buses are also scheduled to retire on October 5.

The Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) undertaking is ushering in a new era of public transportation with the introduction of 16 air-conditioned electric double-decker buses. These innovative buses will ply on selected routes.

The BEST has ambitious plans to acquire and integrate more of these modern double-decker buses into its fleet.

The journey of the non-AC double-decker buses in Mumbai began in 1937. These distinctive buses were cherished for their spacious ‘boarding decks’ and uninterrupted views of Mumbai’s sights.

At one point, Mumbai boasted over 240 double-decker buses. However, the number gradually dwindled to 48 by 2019. Now, only five of these iconic vehicles remain.

The decision to retire the non-AC double-decker buses is part of the BEST’s strategy to phase out buses older than 15 years.

The introduction of air-conditioned electric double-decker buses is a welcome move that will improve the city’s air quality and reduce noise pollution. It will also make public transportation more comfortable and attractive to commuters.

The retirement of the non-AC double-decker buses is a sad chapter in Mumbai’s history. However, the introduction of the new air-conditioned electric double-decker buses is a positive step that will help the city move towards a cleaner and greener future.

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