Designated as a new town some fifty years ago, Milton Keynes was designed for the car owner, but public transport has provided a vital link to many. The large shopping centre opened in 1979 became the focus point for both town and country routes, with an underused bus station next to the new rail station a short distance away. United Counties provided the backbone of services until 1986 when it was replaced by Milton Keynes Citybus. Recast services at deregulation brought almost 100 minibuses to the area with bigger buses returning over the following decade, it then passed through several owners over the next fifteen years until coming under Arriva ownership. Independents now run several routes in the area with Stagecoach running services from its Bedford, Northampton and Kettering depots depots. National Express has a coachway located by the park and ride to provide further interest.