High speed Bus Lane

Stikkord: Areal og transport, Kollektivtransport, Trondheim

In summer 2008, public transport lanes were laid down on all roads running through Trondheim. Unpopular at first, the lanes have proved highly efficient, affecting the whole city.

In summer 2008, public transport lanes were laid down on all roads running through Trondheim. Unpopular at first, the lanes have proved highly efficient, affecting the whole city.

Since the 1990’s Trondheim Municipality has had an ambitious target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and securing an environmentally friendly urban development. Still, in recent years, car use has increased, and will continue to do so unless radical measures are introduced. Politicians therefore decided to establish separate lanes for public transport.

The Trondheim region has come a long way in clarifying how the increase in traffic will be lowered. «Miljøpakke for transport» (Green Transport Package) is a specific, ambitious but realistic plan to cut Trondheim’s carbon emissions by 20per cent within 2018. With more people walking, cycling or taking the bus instead of their own car, an improved living environment can be achieved.

On the 1st of June 2008 a continuous public transport lane was established through Trondheim. This was done to reduce travel times for buses, making bus a more attractive means of transport than car. At the same time, speed limits were lowered and accessibility for cars reduced.

Result: A 20% Reduction in Car Use during Rush Hours

Evaluation of the 5 kilometres of new public transport lane in Trondheim has shown that accessibility for bus traffic has improved. The negative trend has been turned.

Within the so-called «public transport arch» speed has increased with an average of 12 per cent. Changes in motorists’ driving patterns have also been registered. From Elgseter Bru, the main road from the south, the number of cars passing has gone down, and with more people travelling in each vehicle, car traffic is down by 20 per cent.

Pleased with New Public Transport Lanes

At the traffic company running the buses, Team Traffic, both drivers and administration are satisfied with the new infrastructure. Lanes have improved the traffic flow to and from the southern part of Trondheim.

At the time of putting down the lanes, an aim was set for at least eight out of ten inhabitants to be pleased within two months. In the period after the introduction, 55 per cent were negative, and 45 per cent positive. A poll conducted by Sentio Research in March 2009 showed a ratio of 63 per cent positive/37 per cent negative. Women and young people under 30 years old are the most positive.

Statens vegvesen (The Norwegian Public Roads Administration) have been observing the traffic to and from the southern parts and in Midtbyen on a regular basis since the lanes were introduced. In Midtbyen there are still traffic jams and problems causing delays for both buses and cars. Many motorists drive into intersections without sufficient clearing, inhibiting motorists going in crossing directions. As this particular problem is solved, however, The Public Roads Administration contends that traffic will flow more easily to the benefit of motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists.