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Metrobus project in Istanbul wins a USA award

Muamer Hodzic January 30, 2009


The Metrobus project of the Istanbul administration authority was recently given an award during the presentation of the Sustainable Transport Awards in Washington D.C. This award is presented to projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve the quality of life in the inner areas of major cities worldwide.

The Mercedes-Benz CapaCity impressively demonstrates the attractiveness and cost-effectiveness of the bus as a transport system. As a high-capacity vehicle not restricted to on-rail operation, it combines the advantages of a bus, i.e. great flexibility and high cost-effectiveness, with attributes of a tram system such as a high passenger capacity.


In its award citation the jury emphasised that Istanbul has played a pioneering role versus other, comparable major cities with its Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) concept, which went into operation in 2007. The BRT line originally ran from the suburb of Avcilar in the north-west of Istanbul to Topkapi in the city centre, and in 2008 a further connection was added between Topkapi and Zincirlikuyu in view of the service’s widespread acceptance. This additional stretch extended the originally 17-kilometre long route to a length of 29 kilometres. The buses travel on their own roadways at an average speed of 40 km/h, and shorten the daily travel time from 1.5 hours to 40 minutes. Each day the BRT system carries more than 530,000 passengers, which means 70,000 to 80,000 fewer individual journeys in the dense city traffic of this major Turkish metro­polis. Per passenger, a regular service bus such as the CapaCity consumes between 0.3 and 0.4 litres of fuel per 100 kilometres, and thereby makes a significant contribution to the reduction of CO2 emissions. The much-discussed level of CO2 emissions directly depends on fuel consumption.

Mercedes-Benz CapaCity offers solutions for innovative transport concepts

150 CapaCity buses supplied by EvoBus GmbH, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Daimler AG, from the Mercedes-Benz plant in Mannheim have so far formed the backbone of the Bus Rapid Transit line in Istanbul. A further 100 CapaCity buses were ordered for the city of Istanbul by the transport operator Istanbul Elektrik Tramvay ve Tünel Isletmelerie (IETT) at the end of 2008. As in Istanbul, the CapaCity is able to provide answers to many urban public transport problems in other regions as well. It concentrates the transport capacity on the major routes, while reducing fuel, driver, workshop and capital costs. As a high-capacity vehicle not restricted to on-rail operation, the CapaCity combines the typical advantages of the series production city buses, i.e. great flexibility and high cost-effectiveness, with the attributes of a tram system. By virtue of its cost-effective­ness, high passenger capacity of 193 and low infrastructure costs, it is an ideal component for innovative BRT transport systems.

The Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP) was founded in 1985 for the encouragement of environmentally and socially compatible transport concepts worldwide. It cooperates with urban authorities and local interest groups to implement projects aimed at fighting poverty, environmental pollution and dependence on crude oil.

“The mobility requirements of a major metropolis such as Istanbul are enormous. Only an optimal combination of the infrastructure and the vehicle fleet is able to guarantee the best possible transport performance, as the BRT project is already demonstrating today “, says Holger Suffel, Daimler Buses Vice President, Service & Parts.

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