Citizen Bus - cool solution from Germany
In November 2016, RUMOBIL’s lead partner, the Ministry for Regional Development and Transport of Saxony-Anhalt (MLV), together with representatives of Saxony-Anhalt’s transport agency NASA GmbH visited the public transport company of Meißen, Saxony, Germany. In the rural areas around Meißen, a flexible bus service, called “Citizen Bus Lommatzscher Pflege” has been introduced in order to provide a transport service to communities which would otherwise be isolated from the transport network.
The service was implemented as a joint project by actors of the local municipalities, the district administration, the public transport company of Meißen, and volunteers’ association. The “Citizen Busses”, mini busses with 8 seats driven by volunteers, have routes and running times in fixed schedules. At the meeting, organisers of the “Citizen Bus Lommatzscher Pflege” informed about the implementation and operation of the transport service and answered all questions the visitors had.
In 2017, the MLV intends to introduce a “Gemeindebus" (operated by the local public authority) or "Citizen Bus" (operated by an association of local residents) as the pilot activity in the project RUMOBIL. Such bus services are a novel approach for Saxony-Anhalt and aim to improve the public transport in rural/ peripheral areas as well as the rural areas’ connection to national or European transport. The implementation of the new bus service will resort to knowledge and experience gained from good practices such as the “Citizen Bus Lommatzscher Pflege”.