The Bogotá Transmilenio system has attained a very high productivity level averaging 1,600 passengers per day per bus, reducing traveling time by 32%, eliminating 2,109 public-service vehicles, reducing gas emissions by 40%, and making zones around the trunk roads safer thus decreasing accident rates by 90% throughout the system.
What is it?
Transmilenio is a rapid bus transit system throughout the city of Bogotá, which consists of 850 buses and has a demand of 1,400,000 passengers per day.
How does it work?
Initiated by Mayor Penalosa (1998-2000) who had 4 goals in mind:
- Improve public transport system
- Restrict private automobile use
- Expand and improve bicycle paths
- Enhance public space
Mayor Penalosa created a team, separate and external to his own administration, to oversee the implementation of a new transport system.
The Municipality created the company Transmilenio S.A. to plan, organize, and construct the transportation infrastructure, as well as to supervise the bus service.
- Transmilenio is responsible for all areas of infrastructure, such as segregated lanes, stations, terminals and their upkeep, along with all areas of finance.
- Transmilenio oversees all Finances, as Transmilenio pays each operator according to each specific contract.
- Buses (including drivers) are contracted through private firms/operators.
- There are over 15 operators in areas of buses, fare collecting, maintenance, communications, etc.
Bus Network Infrastructure:
- The System operates 18 hours every day.
- Dedicated lanes, large capacity buses and elevated bus stations that allow pre-board ticketing and fast boarding.
- Smaller units offering feeder services to main stations are integrated into the system.
- A centralized coordinated fleet control providing monitoring and communications to schedule services and real-time response to contingencies.
Completion of Transmilenio is broken down into three phases:
- 3 trunk routes (“troncales”):
- Troncal Autonorte: 10.3 kilometers
- Troncal Caracas: 21.8 kilometers
- Troncal Calle 80: 10.1 kilometers
- 7 feeder buses each with a 215-mile route
- 4 head or terminal stations (“portales”)
- 4 midway integration stations (“estaciones intermedias de integración”)
- 53 single stations
- 4 garage yards
- midway garage
- 29 pedestrian bridges, small squares, platforms/sidewalks, and cycle paths (“ciclorutas”).
- 3 trunk routes:
- Troncal Americas- Calle 13: 12.98 kilometers (began operating in December 2003)
- Troncal NQS: 19.3 kilometers (December 2005)
- Troncal Suba: 9.95 kilometers (December 2005)
- Currently, Transmilenio has completed both Phase I and Phase II and has a total of 84.4 kilometers
Transmilenio was financed by a combination of national and local resources. The national government of Colombia allocated 70% of funds while the municipal government of Bogotá allocated the remaining 30%. The city of Bogotá paid for 30% in three different ways:
- Resources taken from privatizing Energia de Bogotá (Bogotá Energy)
- A World Bank loan
- Obtained resources through the United Nations Development Program (UNDP)
Transmilenio Phase III will be implemented gradually. By 2012 it is expected that Transmilenio consist of:
- 3 new trunk routes: 130 km of new dedicated lanes including new bus-stations.
- Around 1200 new articulated buses with a capacity of 160 passengers, operating on trunk routes and 500 new large buses operating on feeder lines.
- Daily 1.8 million passengers transported.
- City committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions can apply this model for quick results.
- City must be prepared to invest in creation of stations and terminals needed for a rapid bus transit system.
- City needs to designated and segregate lanes for system.
- City partners with private sector that is responsible for operational aspects.