ARSC: 2023 is the best year for public transport in Romania, with new trams and an extension of the metro line
The year 2023 is the best year for public transport of people in Romania, through the investments made in the modernization of means of transport and the expansion of the subway in Bucharest-Ilfov, our country being among the countries with the smartest public transport in Eastern Europe, shows an analysis of the Romanian Smart City Association (ARSC).
"2023 was the best year for public passenger transport in Romania. There are several novelties that 2023 will bring to public transport, including the Tudor Arghezi metro station in Sector 4. At the same time, there will be 100 bus trams and electric trams in Bucharest, and the installation of electric bus stations will also begin," said Eduard Dumitrașcu, ARSC president, during ROPAT 2023, the biggest event of the transport authorities.
Within ROPAT, the Romanian authorities and private sector representatives presented an analysis of public transport in Romania.
Radu Dragomir, CEO of Urban Scope, the company that developed the most sustainable urban mobility projects, with the greatest impact in reducing polluting emissions, in Romania, attracted over 1 billion euros in public administration from non-refundable EU funds for projects integrated urban mobility for 20 cities, including Sibiu, Buzău, Constanta, Iași, Focșani, Drobeta Turnu-Severin, Botoșani, Călărași.
"European funds are the driving force behind the development of cities in Romania, and we at Urban Scope carry out important projects both in the public area and for private companies, facilitating development and increasing the quality of life in Romania. We are also proud to be the first company to develop an integrated operational center for urban mobility management. In the next period, the company's focus is on integration concepts and ensuring the intermodality of public transport systems", said Radu Dragomir, CEO of Urban Scope.
Ionel Scrioşteanu, Secretary of State at the Ministry of Transport, pointed out, within ROPAT, that by collaborating with the City Hall of Sector 4 for the construction of the Tudor Arghezi metro station, decentralization was achieved, with 100% funding, including for expropriation, which led to increasing the administrative capacity at the central level. Thus, the central authority can focus on projects such as highways.
"This year we exceed 2.7 billion euros on road infrastructure in Romania. Almost all over the country we have construction sites open for roads. The target is to reach 1,000 km. In a month, a month and a half, we will open 100 km of highway and express road, and next year we will open over 200 km of highway and express road. The state must assume at least a level of funding as we have today to achieve another 1,000 km of highways. Also, it is very important to have 3-4 metropolitan train projects, and I insist that where this type of project is developed, it should be intermodal with urban transport. In 2024 we will have the first kilometers of the A0 highway on the belt of the Capital, we manage to close the first kilometers with the A1 and A2 and we are further developing the radial road concept", said Ionel Scrioşteanu, Secretary of State at the Ministry of Transport.
At the same time, Vasile Diaconescu, the general director of Astra Vagoane Călători, emphasized that, apart from the new trams for Bucharest, he made 100 trams for 5 other cities in the country. "We are glad that Bucharest, the only capital that did not have new trams, will get the new tram number 53", said Diaconescu.
The Deputy Mayor General of the Municipality of Bucharest, Stelian Bujduveanu, said that they are going to receive 100 electric buses and that there are plans to purchase 100 trolleybuses and 62 new trams.
"If we want to have a sustainable public transport, we must have an integration with METROREX, with expansion in Ilfov. We need to analyze what we need to change in order to provide easy access to the city for Romanians from the communes near Bucharest. […] It is also hilarious that parking in the first lane is sanctioned with 140 lei. And if downtown parking is free, there will be no incentive for citizens to park their cars at home. At the same time, we want to exempt electric trucks from the city tax", said Stelian Bujduveanu, Deputy Mayor General of Bucharest City Hall.
In addition, Rareș Hopincă, the Prefect of the Municipality of Bucharest, emphasized that the amounts for the management of Bucharest's public transport "are overwhelming".
"A problem that can be solved with money is just an expense. The health of the people of Bucharest is a problem. We have to ask ourselves how to create a healthier environment in the capital. One is the modernization of transport. I have not seen a European capital developed, functional and with a top standard of living without having efficient quality public transport. All capital cities with this type of efficient transport charge much more for parking. A healthy environment is won with tough measures. We need to align ourselves with the big European capitals, which means that a car costs you a lot of money. Nine months a year in Bucharest you can ride a moped. People must get to work, but how we make them get to work is our responsibility, everyone's, said Rareș Hopincă, Prefect of the Municipality of Bucharest.
At the same time, Magda Peșu, the general director of Anadolu Automobil Rom, mentioned the importance of the impact that electric mobility has. "We appreciate the collaboration with the City Hall of Aiud Municipality in the 'Ecological Transport in Aiud Municipality' project. The project reflects our joint commitment to the development and modernization of the infrastructure necessary to ensure a sustainable, attractive, and efficient public car transport service. I am proud to say that through this project we contribute to the construction of a modern depot for electric transport, a crucial step in reducing the carbon footprint and improving air quality in Aiud and its surroundings", said Anadolu Automobil Rom's general manager.
Several cities and towns in the country already benefit from electric vehicles intended for public transport provided by Anadolu Automobil Rom, one of the most important suppliers of electric buses in Romania, with the Isuzu, Karsan, SOR and Temsa brands in its portfolio.
Public transport in Romanian cities, among the most advanced in Eastern Europe
Public transport in Romanian cities is among the most advanced in Eastern Europe, undergoing a continuous process of digital transformation in recent years through investments in electric buses, electronic payment systems and mobile applications, shows an analysis of the Romanian Association for Smart City (ARSC).
"We are pleased to see that Romania is rapidly evolving towards a smart public transport system, with digital solutions that bring significant benefits to travelers and the entire society. This advance not only improves the experience of travelers, but also contributes to reducing the impact on the environment and making operations more efficient. Of course, there is still a need for investments in public transport infrastructure, but progress in recent years has been fast, the most accelerated in the region", declares Eduard Dumitrașcu, president of ARSC.
Among the main achievements that have contributed to this advance are primarily the increase in the fleet of electric buses, the integration of the digital payment system in the means of transport, ride-sharing solutions, and the development of mobile applications for public transport that help to optimize daily trips. These innovations facilitate better coordination of urban traffic, reducing waiting times and improving passenger flow.
The best examples of cities with a visibly improved public transport system, which makes the locality a smart city, are Cluj-Napoca, Oradea, Brașov, Turda, Suceava and Bucharest. They have implemented advanced ticketing and real-time information systems, integrated traffic monitoring technologies and invested in green vehicles that contribute to a cleaner and healthier urban environment.
About ROPAT - The Meeting of Public Transport Manufacturers and Authorities
ROPAT 2023, organized at the Palace of Parliament on November 16-17, had 3 important components: conference, awarding of the best projects in the field of public transport and an exclusive working session. The ROPAT Connect session, dedicated to leaders from transport companies, transport operators and Intercommunity Development Associations (ADIs), was chaired by Vladimir Ghițulescu, General Director of TPBI, and Eduard Dumitrașcu, President of the Romanian Smart City Association.
The main purpose of ROPAT Connect was to strengthen relations between key stakeholders in the field of public transport. This meeting provided a unique platform to identify and discuss technical and strategic challenges facing the industry. It was also a good time for the exchange of best practices and innovative solutions in the field of urban mobility.
Recognition of Excellence in Public Transport at ROPAT 2023
At the event, awards were presented to recognize and celebrate significant achievements in public transport. The awards highlighted the innovation, efficiency and commitment of organizations and individuals to improving urban mobility. Here is the list of prizes and winners:
1. The "Tudor Arghezi metro station" project
Winners: METROREX SA, Sector 4 City Hall, and the Ministry of Transport
2. The prize for "Modernization and Equipment of the Tram Line in the City of Bucharest"
Winners: Bucharest City Hall, Bucharest Transport Company (STB), and Astra Vagoane Călători
3. Award in the Metropolitan Transport Category
Winner: Radu Dragomir, CEO, Urban Scope - for the development of Intelligent Transport Systems projects at the national level
4. Award for the "Traffic Management System in the Municipality of Bacău" Project
Winner: Lucian Daniel Stanciu-Viziteu, Mayor, Bacău City Hall
5. Award for the Project "Ecological Public Transport in the Municipality of Aiud"
Winners: Aiud City Hall and Anadolu Automobil Rom
6. Award for Excellence in Public Transport Organization
Winner: Popa Iancu Ioan, President, Alba Iulia - Local Transport (AIDA - TL)
In addition to the prizes, two distinctions were also awarded:
- Partner of the Year at European level: EIT Urban Mobility.
- Partner of the Year for the activity of improving and integrating public transport and mobility in the Bucharest-Ilfov region: the Intercommunity Development Association for Public Transport Bucharest - Ilfov (TPBI).
These awards highlight the commitment and outstanding efforts of all winners in the field of public transport, laying the foundations for a more sustainable and efficient future in urban mobility.
We thank our trusted partners, Astra Vagoane Călători, Network One Distribution, Urban Scope, Swarco, Anadolu Automobil Rom, Scala Assistance, Scope Systems, eMoiblity Rentals, Real World Systems, Novatech, Lenovo and Beia Internazionale.
The Romanian Smart City Association (ARSC) is a non-governmental organization established in 2016 with the aim of supporting the development of smart cities in Romania. ARSC, together with over 300 members and partners, encourages innovation, digitization and new technologies as means to transform local communities into smart and sustainable cities, developing efficient and sustainable solutions for cities and communities in Romania.
*This is a Press release.