This Friday, the starting signal was given in Wiesbaden, the capital of the state of Hesse, for the redrafting of local transport plans for two local authorities. The local public transport organisations (LNO) of Wiesbaden and the Rheingau-Taunus district want to revise their respective local public transport plans by 2024. Two experienced planning offices have been found to provide technical and conceptual support for the revision.
The respective public transport authorities of the state capital Wiesbaden and the Rheingau-Taunus district have decided to closely coordinate the development of their local transport plans: «In terms of transport, the Rheingau-Taunus district and Wiesbaden have very close ties. Thousands of commuters travel from the district to or through the state capital every day. It therefore makes more than sense to think and plan local transport more holistically for the entire region than has been the case up to now”, explains Alexander Gruber, head of technology and transport planning at the Rheingau-Taunus-Verkehrsgesellschaft (RTV), which acts as the local transport authority in the Rheingau-Taunus district.
Reorganisation for more attractiveness in local transport
The head of the Wiesbaden public transport authority, Sandra Beege, adds: «The current local transport plan for Wiesbaden dates back to 2015. We are now taking the opportunity to align public transport with the future requirements in the city. For the first time, we will be able to draw on an extended data basis. This will allow us to determine even more precisely the actual needs for a high level of attractiveness of, for example, Wiesbaden’s bus transport. The new local transport plan will therefore have the consequence of changing the route network within Wiesbaden in such a way that bus transport and thus the environmental alliance will be strengthened in its entirety.”
Patrick Düerkop, the responsible project manager at the Wiesbaden local authority, emphasises: «A very important part of the reorganisation will be the direct involvement of the citizens. This will take place in the form of various participation formats in which everyone can contribute personal comments and suggestions. Planning and public participation will run throughout the year 2023. The results of the local transport plan will then be presented to the political bodies for voting at the beginning of 2024.
ioki and Planersocität to cooperate as planning consortium
Since the beginning of August, the LNO of the state capital Wiesbaden and the Rheingau-Taunus district have been carrying out a tendering procedure for the additional technical expertise in the new drafting of the local transport plan. In the tendering procedure, a planning consortium consisting of Planersocietät from Dortmund and ioki GmbH (ioki) from Frankfurt prevailed.
Planersocietät is one of the leading transport planning offices in Germany and advises municipalities and public authorities nationwide on transport development and local transport planning. Currently, for example, Planersocietät is developing local transport plans for the Hessian university towns of Marburg and Gießen. ioki has already produced data-driven analyses for local public transport for around 100 planning projects in Germany and abroad. These served, among other things, as the basis for the local transport plan of the city of Detmold and for a route and on-demand concept in the Rheingau-Taunus district.
The two companies are pooling their expertise and experience for the redesign of the local transport plans. The experienced analysis team of ioki collects, analyses and simulates the relevant mobility data with a user-centred approach. Based on ioki’s data analyses, the planners will derive appropriate measures and recommendations for action. To do this, the expert teams will draw on experience from numerous public transport planning projects. In addition, Planersocietät will accompany the comprehensive involvement of the public as well as political and social stakeholders in the planning process.
«We are acting as a planning consortium to develop an attractive, efficient and effective local public transport network. The planning area is extremely exciting for us because there is a great variety of requirements for public transport. Axes that require a high frequency alternate with the requirements of fast and regional transport. In addition, there are neighbourhoods and small-scale interconnections that require a demand-oriented service. We are looking forward to the challenge of bringing the transport of the future onto the roads here on site, together with the people in dialogue,» said Gregor Korte, Senior Transport Planner at Planersocietät and project manager for the new development of the local transport plans.
Michael Wurm, Director Mobility Analytics at ioki, adds: «For the relaunch, we are combining our proven data warehouse with around 70 million data records and analytical competencies for innovative transport planning. This enables us to plan local transport according to the actual mobility needs of the population in Wiesbaden and the Rheingau-Taunus district – for attractive, efficient and sustainable mobility.»
Data-based and experienced partners
For Wiesbaden’s head of transport, Andreas Kowol, the cooperation with the planning offices is groundbreaking: «After the end of the CityBahn, Wiesbaden is more dependent than ever on efficient public transport. That’s why I welcome the city council’s initial decision for a new public transport plan. With ioki and Planersocietät, our local public transport organisation has found two specialist offices for this purpose, from which I expect exciting new impulses. In particular, ioki also brings Big Data into play. By analysing a multitude of mobility-relevant data, we can now check the functionality of the existing system in a well-founded and data-based way and identify new potential. At the same time, with Planersocietät, we have an experienced and well-known planning office at our side to allow these new findings to flow into our new local transport plan in a targeted manner. I am looking forward to the cooperation and wish all project partners every success in the implementation of the plan.
Günter F. Döring, head of the transport department of the Rheingau-Taunus district, adds: «With the optimised local transport plan, we want to make it possible to do without a second car in our district. This saves a household monthly cost of about 450 euros, which can then be used elsewhere.»
What is a local public transport plan?
To explain: a local public transport plan includes all criteria that regulate the operation of local public transport in an area – in this case the city of Wiesbaden or the Rheingau-Taunus district. These include, for example, the requirements for exact routes, the frequency of the lines, the position and equipment of stops, the equipment of the vehicle fleets and much more. The local transport plan is revised regularly so that it can be adapted to the current needs of passengers. The goal is to further increase the attractiveness of public transport. More people should decide to leave their own car behind or not to buy a second car and use bus and train instead.
Photo: Detlef Gottwald