Yerevan transport network reformed, fully moving onto state budget
The final version of the new transport network was presented in the Yerevan City Hall today.
Its development was entrusted to international consulting company WYG International Limited. According to preliminary calculations, the reforms will cost about $100 million.
What changes are in store?
The British consulting company WYG has been working on the project since 2014.
The company presented a plan to the heads of the capital’s communities, representatives of public organizations and experts.
The changes will affect the number of bus routes. Instead of the former 111, only 42 routes will operate in the capital. The length of the entire network will by almost three times. This does not mean that there will be no full coverage: as the project developers explain, the reduction in length will occur thanks to the elimination of repetitive routes.
The number of vehicles will also be reduced – now, a total of 845 buses and 101 trolley buses will be used.
All this will make it possible to achieve serious savings, which will positively affect the tariff policy. According to the developers, a modern unified public transport network will provide a more flexible tariff and ticketing system.
What else does the reform entail?
Public transport will also be adapted for people with disabilities – currently, only some of Yerevan’s buses are equipped with appropriate mechanisms.
Yerevan Mayor Marutyan spoke about moving the transport system onto the state budget:
“Transportation is…strategically important for us, so at the moment we are inclined to implement the program 100% at the expense of public and state funds, and then see what part can be delegated to the private sector”, Marutyan said.
The mayor expressed hope that the process of introducing a new network will take no longer than two years. The project developers first talked about a term of two to four years.
Social media buzz
Social media users are divided about the new programme. Some unconditionally support the mayor, others look at the upcoming reforms with suspicion.
Here are some typical comments:
“Bravo! You work very quickly and quickly in these difficult conditions!”
“Will there be air conditioning in these new vehicles? Because if it is not, then do not even begin to expect that in the summer months the streets will be freed from private cars and that people will switch to transport. It is impossible in this thirty-something heat to use crowded vehicles!”
“Something is not very clear – what will happen to the prices?”
“If transport becomes more expensive, people will not be able to use it!”