The Public Transport Fleet in Krakow

Krakow is constantly renewing its PT fleet by buying modern vehicles. Both trams and buses are concerned. Mainly, they are exchanged for lowfloor,vehicles, which is a great solution for older people.

There are also more convenient and safer facilities inside the vehicles, including special seats for older people. Additional handrails are being mounted into the tram entrances. There is also electronic and audio information about the next stops inside a lot of tramways and on some modern buses.

Background & Objectives

There was a strong need to exchange the old PT fleet into for a modern one, adjusted to European standards. The old buses and trams were not only inacceptable from the ecological point of view, but  they were also usually uncomfortable for passengers, especially for older ones.

Therefore the main objectives of the activity were to meet European standards as far as the fleet was concerned, to improve the quality of travelling by PT and the image of PT in Krakow at the same  time. The activity was addressed to all users of PT in Krakow (approx. 1 million passengers daily), however the group that obviously takes advantage of it most are older people and disabled people with problems to move.

Implementation

The very crucial issue for the implementation of the activity was constant political support, as the PT company in Krakow is a “budget unit”. For that reason the consent of the City Council was necessary concerning the budget destinated for the modernisation of the fleet. The activity budget contains the purchase of modern trams (like Bombardier) or buses (mostly Solaris). The stakeholders involved in the implementation of the activity were a local PT company, the Municipality of Krakow, the City Council, facility providers and vehicle producers.

The most important issue in the preparation phase of this activity was to choose the best vehicles in the Polish, European or world market.

This measure reached almost all of PT passengers in Krakow (approx. 1 million passengers daily). Krakow is constantly modernising its PT fleet.

The major obstacle was actually the money, new vehicles are quite expensive.

Conclusions

Due to the gradual exchange of Krakow’s fleet, PT gets a new quality and better image in the view of Krakow’s inhabitants. Thanks to the modern vehicles there are less accidents concerning entering or exiting a PT vehicle and the comfort of travel, especially for older and handicapped people, is much higher.

Obviously, new trams and buses are also much better for the environment and they increase the standard of living inside the city (less noise, emissions etc.)

At the end of 2008 there were 50 new Bombardier trams in Krakow. Almost all buses are modern now. Krakow’s public transport fleet has also been appreciated in the international arena – it has been recognized by Forbes.com as the 9th best public transport system in the world. The top ten include, amongt others, Hong Kong, Berlin, London and Osaka.

The activity is easily transferable, although the high cost of the purchase of vehicles is acknowledged as a main barrier in many cities.

The measure is running constantly, approx. two times per year new trams or buses are bought.

Contact Person
Mr. Tomasz ZWOLINSKI
Firm: Municipality of Kraków
Address: os. Zgody 2, 31-949 - Kraków, Poland
Phone: +48-12 61-68 748

The AENEAS project is supported by:
Inteligent Energy
The sole responsibility for the content of this case study lies with the authors.
It does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the European Communities.
The European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.