Dundee councillors will be asked to subsidise six loss-making bus routes next week at a cost of nearly £500,000.
Bids to run the services will be considered by politicians, with plans for the routes to be subsidised by the council for two years at a net cost of £240,000 a year.
Applications have been received by transport companies to run the “socially necessary but commercially uneconomic” city bus services.
Mark Flynn convener of Dundee City Council’s city development committee said: “At the end of last year we looked at the way the city’s bus network is supported, particularly the gaps in the commercial system that might need to be filled and the routes that have historically been supported.
The council will take whatever steps it can to support the provision of bus services
“This tender report not only takes account of the overall situation in the bus industry, but also the significant financial pressures being faced by the council and the added uncertainty on future passenger demand caused by the pandemic.
“People in our communities need to be reassured that where there is a social need but it is not economic for the bus companies to provide them, the council will take whatever steps it can to support the provision of bus services.”
According to the report, which will be considered by the city development committee on Monday, tender submissions were evaluated based on price and quality.
Quality criteria included the age of the bus fleet, the offer of community benefits, and ability to provide cover in the event of breakdowns or accidents.
It recommends that the tender to run the outer circle all day on Sunday and on Monday to Saturday evenings is awarded to Xplore Dundee.
Monday to Saturday services between Kirkton, Downfield, Lawside and City Centre and Mill O Mains, Stobswell and City Centre should be awarded to Moffat and Williamson, the report added.
And it was also recommended that the Monday to Saturday services between Dryburgh, Lochee, West End and City Centre and the Broughty Ferry circular should be tendered to Stagecoach East Scotland.
Before the new contracts go live in August detailed routes would be discussed with the successful companies.
Passenger numbers will determine the exact amount of overall subsidy needed, the council added.
According to figures collected before the coronavirus pandemic more than 200,000 journeys were made on services supported by the council with an average subsidy per passenger trip of £1.10.